Posts Tagged ‘Leeds’

Second week in the office and the campaign is rolling now, a lot of advertising for the coming demonstration in March to which we are selling tickets to in our office AS46.
If you are interested in going to the demonstration on the 26th of March but are still unsure about things come up and have a chat, we will put your mind at rest and hopefully encourage you to bring family and friends too.
Once again it has been a busy and yet productive weekend, Andy and Jordi attended an executive meeting for the UCU on Saturday and gave some up dates with the campaign followed by some much appreciated applause. The members did a whip around seeing us raise a nice little donation for campaign materials; it is always nice to see committed individuals.
One issue that came up over and over both by ourselves and by the UCU members was addressing this culture of fear that seems to have developed around protesting, the media sensationalises violence in protests in order to reinforce this culture of fear, by creating a moral panic and all together negative portrayal of protests it puts people of attending.
Firstly, the violence that may occur at a protest is confined to small groups of individuals and this is not representative of the larger mood of actions of protesters. The Manchester anti cuts march on the 29th of January proved this, not only did unions and students take to the streets but so too did young children and families. Toddlers smiled from their prams with the hustle and bustle of the march and school children of all ages raised signs from ‘Let me learn’ right down to cut nuclear ‘weapons not my future.’
It is inspiring to see a nation take to the streets in Egypt and that is because they are fighting against corruption and for justice, its easy to see images of riot police In London of tanks in Egypt and get scared. But, remember protesting is a right and one everyone has and should use if you feel your voice doesn’t deserve to be listened to on the streets then why do you think it will be listened to when you complain to your MP about broken roads or not being able to afford to send your kids to school.
We want to try and remove this fear, if anyone would like to chat to us about protests or the movement, or would just like to speak about the anti cuts campaigns here and in the rest of the country we are happy to help.
We are in the office 9-5 most days so drop in and have a cup of tea and a chat.
Solidarity and good health.

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The events in Egypt are a global phenomenon and are being watched and heard about all over the world, it bears considerable weight here in the U.K with the majority of people. The left wing groups in the U.K seem to be keeping considerable track of events, with our twitter page going crazy with updates on the situation, due to the cuts the government are carrying out many left wing groups feel they share an affinity and empathy (as everyone should) with the Egyptian people.

Many people in the U.K make reference to the protests and the activism in Egypt being the same as that here in the U.K which while on a basic level is true, though it is also something that we personally do not agree with. The simple fact is that while activists in the U.K and activists in Egypt struggle against an oppressive government that seeks to exploit and ideologically attack its poorest citizens, the levels in which the government are acting is completely different.
Egypt’s citizens faced their own military, a frightening concept indeed. Where as in the U.K the ever growing prospect of a police state is becoming apparent even to the most a political of people.
As of this morning however the Egyptian military have begun supporting the efforts of the anti government movement clearing the square of Mubarak’s supporters.
2011 is looking to be a real time of global change and as such, it should be a time where everyone looks around at the troubles abroad and in our own society and begin to realise that ideological assaults are targeting all but the richest citizens. People need to start pulling together and helping the anti cuts movement in any way they can. If this means just dropping in to chat with us at the LTSAC office, which operates a 9-5 open door drop in Monday to Friday or even helping with awareness and participation in events and attending protests, that is great. Everyone’s contribution is valued and everyone’s opinion will be heard, we are a community and part of being a student community and a member of Leeds Trinity University College is to become an informed and socially active individual.
Leeds Trinity encourages ”empowerment of individuals, enabling them to contribute to their community as productive, enterprising and creative citizens of the world.” (Quote from page 2 of Leeds Trinity University College strategic plan 2007-2012, revised Nov 2009).
This is something that we encourage from all students and certainly something that LTSAC are passionate about; by following this concept it means we aim to address the attack on education and this country’s most vulnerable by the government. We want to offer our students a campus that they are proud of and want to spend time on after their daily education is over.

Solidarity to all that strive to combat the oppression and greed of the worlds richest and their attack on the vulnerable.

The office is starting to come together, with our core group setting up campaign events in order to connect better with the student community, one of our LTSAC members is beginning to arrange entertainment that will mean that the students have a reason to spend time on campus at the weekends and not spend large amounts of money going home every week.
We have contacted a few friends and acquaintances in order to arrange music gigs on campus, but we are also looking in to events such as laser tag, these events will be arranged by LTSAC and aim to improve the ‘student experience’. If this word is banded about we feel that it should be used in a way that actually addresses what the students may want from their time at university, we want the student body to be a community and to get more involved in events and societies on the campus. We encourage the student body to attend events run at the university such as society activities, a disability awareness event later on next month which LTSAC are going to be helping the psychology society with.
We would also like to inform you that there is also going to be a Psychology Society charity event very soon in aid of a mental health charity, this will raise money for a good cause and we think will be enjoyable for all that attend so please keep an eye out for that.
The anti cuts movement is still LTSAC primary focus but we are looking at ways to get students involved in any way, even if this means popping in to our office in AS46 to have a chat or even helping out with fund raisers. We would love to see our students getting more informed about the anti cuts campaign but at the same time we want every student to feel like part of a community in which their voices are heard and their opinions matter.
So if anyone has any suggestions for helping students get involved in the anti cuts campaign just leave us a message or come and see us in the office, our door is always open to visitors and we would happily consider and appreciate any contribution to raising awareness of our campaign. We want to make this campus a place that students want to stay at on weekends, not flee as if the plague is approaching.

After leaving Occupation with a victory on some of our demands it is some what a odd transition to not be living with all the occupiers and working a 20 hour day. However, we are not just stopping because we are out. The office we have aquired as part of our demand means that we now have a official space in which to operate from, more than anything it means that everyone is less on edge about imminent eviction.

Our office in AS46 will now be the base of operations on a 9-5 Mon-Fri basis, we may have people in the office in evening and weekends but it will not be an occupation environment so people get to once again enjoy the luxuries that you take for granted. These include privacy, a warm comfortable bed at night, showers (oh how we have all missed showers) and a cooker. This is great for the vegans (and vegetarians) as veganism is something that should ideally be done properly, it also means the level of take away pizza by the carnivores will (potentially) be reduced.

We will have many campaigns in operation in the coming weeks and months including a community campaign, this is basically planning events such as music gigs, comedians, food events and workshops. We hope in doing this we can get students, lecturers and the community not only bonding but also interested in the anti cuts movements.

We are due to have some office equipment delivered at some point this week such as a office desk and some office chairs just to make operating easier, but we are also operating a 9-5, mon-fri drop in service open to anyone so we have a few comfy chairs and a more homely feel to part of the room.
We are already scheduling lots of events and meeting of other anti cuts movements in and around the area so as you will all know, There is no rest for the wicked.

A message that is really ringing true in the student body of Leeds trinity and this is in all areas, is how supportive and amazing the lecturers are.
Leeds trinity has lecturing staff that are professionals in their fields, both past and present and the nature of Trinity as an institution allows this professional knowledge to be passed on very effectively, in an institution like trinity it is possible for all students to speak at length to lecturers and tutors about their subjects almost 5 days a week.
To us in the occupation and the rest of the student body this is amazing and this is what made almost every student here choose Leeds Trinity as their university, we all feel like we have not only gained a education from being here but it encourages us to become a more involved member of a community.
With this in mind we are looking at arranging events that will get the collective interest of the student body, we want to be a community one that cares about this institution its future and the supportive lecturers we have teaching us.
Based on this we will begin to split the campaign focus , one direction will be to get the student body more active and involved through events such as fancy dress nights, themed nights, film and social events.
Community is a big part of what makes this university appealing to so many and community is something we are committed to nurturing in order to help remove bullying, help stabilize a healthy supportive learning environment and to ensure that this student community has the chance to get informed and involved in society.
In order to address the cuts to education and the cuts to all areas in Britain, people need to feel like they can ask for information but, not be forced in to having it. To combat these cuts we need to first combat the disconnected feeling between a nation and its citizens.
Unity will cement our cause and our cause will drive back the ideological assault on this countries citizens. We will fight to stop these draconian legislations and this government will be replaced sooner or later by one that keeps its promises and values each individual. Not just those with wealth.

Solidarity and Good Health.

A member of the occupation attended a student committee yesterday to see how the movement as a whole across not only Yorkshire and the north but in Britain as an entirety will begin to come together. this will include meeting dates, proposed plans and so forth.
The meeting involved members from schools, colleges the community and the universities(Leeds Met,Leeds uni and Leeds Trinity).

some progress came of meeting as a movement and it once again meant that new connections were formed for everyone, this included a donation suggestion from a member of the Leeds Trade council which is very much appreciated and a member is due to visit us during the week.
We have some other events going on during the remainder of this week, but as many of you will be aware the room we are occupying is due to be under construction.
This construction is not only unwanted by the staff (who’s social space it is) but is also due to be a considerable amount of money, based on this we have now been told by our liaison with management that that construction will be starting Thursday 27th Jan.
Due to this deadline it will mean that we are going to be asked to move on that date which may be a contentious issue.

As such we have once again stated that we want some movement on our demands we are not happy with the level of respect or recognition that management has been giving us. It not only shows a unwillingness to follow through on the ‘support’ we are supposed to be getting it also shows a lack of support and care for the national economical situation as well as the ideological assault of the poor.

Continued support for our campaign has been great with a vegan food delivery from a friend and a supportive visitor from the leeds college of music bringing a big shop for us. this is greatly received!

Our biggest concern this week other than the impending building work deadline is getting people to Manchester March on the 29th.
If anyone from Leeds trinity would like to go to the march this Saturday in Manchester (staff or student) come and visit us in occupation and we will sign you up for a minimal charge of £5 pounds.

The demonstrations are an important aspect of the campaign as the vast numbers that take to the streets are a automatic representation of social change and the more voices and feet on the street the more we can make change happen.

Keep reading, keep supporting and keep fighting.
Solidarity and good health

Its 9:00am here in occupation (far to early for your regular teen to be up) and the rest of the group are piled around in various places, cushions, air beds and the odd sofa being used as make shift beds.
We will let them sleep a little longer today as everyone is exhausted from yet again another busy week, but soon they will be up ready to tidy and plan the week to come. There is no such thing as a spare moment in occupation, there are always plans to be made and things to be arranged.

We are getting things moving on the coach front for the march in Manchester on the 29th and will in some way or form have two 49 seaters’ we believe, this means that if anyone not just trinity students would like to get in contact for a small deposit we can sort them out a place on the coach hopefully. This will include school kids i believe with consent from parents of course.

With the occupation here growing in its recognition both internally and externally to the university grounds we are looking to increase our connections to other Anti cuts groups not only in Leeds or in the U.k but internationally.
We have numerous views and mentions from groups external to the U.K including an occupation in California which is great, our next thought is to try and contact these groups and begin networking Idea’s, events and sharing the skills and experience that we had prior and have gained since being in the occupation.
Whilst unintentionally, the occupation here and we are sure in many other areas is actually enabling us as students to become more equipped and better rounded people.
Social confidence has gone from strength to strength with the involvement in meetings, rally’s and contact with general public etc. Not only this but many of us within the occupation have gained media experience that rivals or exceeds that of most journalism students, with two guest pieces written by our members on the local guardian web page, interview experience and so forth.

While the obvious advantages of being in occupation are clear including forming friendships, team working, inter personal skills and simply knowing that you feel so passionately about something that when you look around you dont understand why there are those that simply dont care or refuse to take part in the fight against oppressive class ideology. There are also the skills as mentioned earlier that are invaluable to making us more confident, socially aware and could even affect employability (providing there are jobs for us when we leave the university, which is as yet still unclear as to if it will be sooner or later, or if it is even possible in this country.)

Many students are actually very strongly weighing up the decision to move abroad after their degree to either start a new life or even continue there education in a place that offers a fairer system and higher quality of education.

We hope to have our interview questions with Pudsey MP Stuart Andrews up before middle of this coming week, as you can imagine we want the full picture to be disclosed and not just paraphrased ramblings.

Solidarity and Good Health