The Judges decision to grant Sussex University a possession order has put the 7 week occupation at Sussex University under threat of immediate eviction. This decision was made despite reams of witness letters from staff and students supporting the occupation. Many pointed to the essential role of the occupation in expressing the view of the vast majority of students and staff opposed to the privatisation plans. They talked of their experience of the occupation as one which is providing a valuable forum for campaigning, education and encouraging solidarity across the university community. Almost 4000 people signed a petition against the protest ban within 36 hours, thousands have also signed statements supporting the campaign. The University management on the other hand stressed the importance of protecting private property over the right to protest, or the rights of those staff it is intent on outsourcing. The possession order brings the threat of immediate eviction whilst the injunction bans any protest without the prior permission of the University authorities. These were the kind of tactics resorted to on a major scale in Quebec when the ruling party introduced major attacks on the right to assembly and picket in the context of a mass movement against fees. The law was defeated on the streets along with fees and the politicians that tried to introduce them.
We are calling on everyone to:
1. email the Vice Chancellor immediately demanding that no eviction is ordered @ VC@sussex.ac.uk.
2. We await further news from the occupation but ask people to send messages of solidarity to the occupation to firstname.lastname@example.org to show we will continue to stand with staff and students in the fight to defend our education.
GBC has recommended anyone in/joining the occupation take down the name of Kelly’s solicitors 0800 387463 & GBC Brighton’s # on your arm – 07511341951 (best is to write it on your arm).