The week of action – coordinated by the People’s Assembly Against Austerity – saw direct action, demonstrations, comedy, gigs, rallies and much more.
The Student Assembly Against Austerity played a major role in mobilizing students from across Britain to take part. Here is a brief report featuring some of our highlights from a fantastic week of action.
Kicking off the week of action, we joined over 80,000 people in protesting on Sunday 4 October – the biggest demonstration in Manchester’s history!
Trade unions and People’s Assembly groups mobilized in force, with banners from local anti-cuts struggles, the anti-war and anti-racist movements, equality campaigners as well as the environment movement.
The Student Assembly Against Austerity organized a massive, vibrant and loud student bloc. Over 500 people came together for this student bloc – from universities and colleges across Britain.
Working alongside the Student Assembly Against Austerity, Manchester University Students’ Union, the Manchester Metropolitan Student Assembly Against Austerity and the Free Education group all played a key role in mobilizing big numbers of students from Manchester to join the student bloc.
Georgia Grace Gibson, was has recently joined the Manchester Met Student Assembly Against Austerity said:
"Having just moved to Manchester I was keen to get involved with their activist scene- and there couldn’t have been a better introduction than marching alongside Student Assembly Against Austerity for both the general, huge anti Tory protest on Sunday and Monday’s student “debt in” outside the conference.
"The entire week of action had a hugely successful vibe- everyone involved was proud of what we stood for, particularly amongst the student bloc amid chants of “students workers and the sick did not cause the deficit, that’s bullshit, come off it- the enemy is profit”. I have never been to a more empowering protest full of such inspirational activist and speakers during the week- seeing the average protester alongside the likes of Jeremy Corbyn, Natalie Bennett, Owen Jones and Lindsey German, all fighting against austerity, cuts, warfare and many other Tory monstrosities is the extra motivation we all need to believe we can overcome this current sorry state of government and have a better future."
The student ‘debt in’ against education cuts
The next day, students were out in force again. We staged a noisy ‘debt in’ action outside the Tory Party Conference venue on the Monday afternoon. Tory delegates looked on as we chanted ‘no ifs, no buts, no education cuts!’
As well as attracting the attention of Tory delegates we also made it onto the BBC News at 10 that same evening – featuring as part of the top item on the flagship news program!
You can also watch our short video of the action here.
Jonathan Maunders from Oxford Brookes Student Assembly Against Austerity added:
“The student debt in further illustrated that young people will not stand by as the government blindly attacks their human right to learn in any way they can.”
The Student Assembly Against Austerity then joined in with all the protests, meetings, events and direct action which happened throughout the week of action.
We were inspired to join over 7,000 people at the ‘People’s Post’ meeting featuring Jeremy Corbyn on Monday evening.
On Tuesday there was a big and loud protest against the cuts to the NHS.
We also joined public meetings and protests against racism, war and climate change.
Inspired by the week of action against the Tories? Want to get involved in the Student Assembly Against Austerity? We have lots of stuff coming up including…
Wednesday 4 November – national demo for free education
London, meet on Malet Street at 12noon
March alongside thousands of students to defend education against the huge attacks launched by the Tory government.
Join the facebook event here.
Get in touch by dropping us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday 21 November – Student Assembly Against Austerity National Convention
SOAS in central London, 10.00am – 5.30pm
Come along for a day of high profile speakers, interactive workshops and action planning.
Register your free place here.
Join the facebook event here.
Set up a Student Assembly Against Austerity local group
We have over 30 local Student Assembly campus groups. If there isn’t one on your campus yet get in touch and we can help you set one up! Email us on email@example.com.