Petition: Drop the suspension of student protestors

Activist group launch petition demanding reinstatement of University of Birmingham students suspended for protesting

August 7, 2014 · 2 min read

The higher education activist group Defend Education Birmingham have launched a petition demanding that the University of Birmingham lift the year-long suspensions of Kelly Rodgers and Simon Furse and the six month suspended sentence handed out to the former Birmingham Guild of Students Vice President of Education, Hattie Craig. The students were charged for their involvement in an occupation at the University last November.

The petition already has over 350 signatures and once again shines an unwanted spotlight on the University of Birmingham, which has over the last year faced stringent criticism for its attitude towards protest and its treatment of student protestors. Following the arrest of 13 and the suspension of 5 students last January a number of respected academics, activists and artists signed an open letter in which they described the University’s treatment of its students as “at odds with free speech”.

The University of Birmingham further compounded its autocratic reputation on July 30 when it violently evicted a student occupation held in support of the suspended students. According to Defend Education Birmingham, over 25  bailiffs and as many police were called in to break up the occupation and acted with “no regard for the safety of any occupiers involved”.

In a rare act of support for student protestors the National Union of Students has voted to support the campaign to overturn the suspensions and pledged to use money from its legal fund to contribute towards their court costs.

Click here to sign the petition.

For updates from Defend Education Birmingham follow @DefendEdBrum

 


The Socialist Olympics of 1936

Radical workers’ sporting organisations and the 1936 People’s Olympiad illustrate the role of sport in fighting oppression, writes Uma Arruga i López.

Review – You’re History: The Twelve Strangest Women in Music

Lesley Chow argues for a new kind of music criticism that re-evaluates women musicians and "meaningless" music, writes Rhian E Jones

Lying through their legacy-speak

Olympic ‘legacy’ has greased the path for enormous, upward transfer of wealth to the global propertied classes, writes Jules Boykoff


SWexit: What are exit schemes for sex workers missing?

If earning money is a fundamental reason for entering the sex industry, it is also essential to leaving it, writes Marin Scarlett.

Failure to deliver

Major financial institutions have cited Deliveroo’s employment practices for its disastrous public share launch. Alice Martin and Tom Powdrill look at what went wrong and what it might mean for workers’ rights

Power on the picket line: remembering the Burnsall Strike

Almost 30 years on, Sarbjit Johal recalls supporting the strike, which consisted of mostly Punjabi women workers

Want to try Red Pepper before you take out a subscription? Sign up to our newsletter and read Issue 231 for free.