Over 80 students have occupied at Sussex University in protest at management’s continuing plans to make savage cuts. The students are also acting in solidarity with their teaching staff, who have voted overwhelmingly for industrial action.
Earlier today an anti-cuts carnival on the campus brought together staff and students with music and speeches. Many of the students wore animal masks as a reference to senior management’s comments that students behaved “like animals” in the last occupation.
Riot police have now come onto the campus just outside Brighton. Some 16 police vans have been parked around the building with police threatening to break down the barricaded doors.
Syed, a student at Sussex told Socialist Worker, “We are acting in solidarity with our lecturers. Students are really pleased about the ballot result. This is only going to escalate if management don’t back down.”
Around 100 students were demonstrating in solidarity with the occupation this afternoon.
Police have tried to intimidate demonstrators and occupiers by holding up pepper spray cans but they remain undeterred.
Sebastian who is also inside the occupation told Socialist Worker, “Every time we have an activity there are new faces. The more we act the more people want to get involved. Support is high for the movement among staff and students.”
The occupation at Sussex comes after Westminster University occupied on Monday of this week and lecturers at King’s are starting their ballot for strike action.
Attacks of education are happening in many universities and colleges throughout Britain. Sussex shows the way—with industrial action and a militant student movement.