West Midlands Green Party

Greens condemn rise in tuition fees

10 November 2010

The doubling of tuition fees by the coalition government has been condemned by the Green Party.

 

Caroline Lucas, Leader of the Green Party and MP for Brighton Pavilion, said: "Today is a dark day for the students of the future - and for Lib Dem voters who have seen, yet again, their Party's leader make a shameful u-turn on a key election pledge.

"The Greens are now the only main political party that support free education for all.

"A cap of £9,000 is simply unacceptable for a country that values social mobility and inclusiveness. This announcement will mean our public degrees will be among the most costly in the world. Many people will be priced out of going to university - and those who do go will be saddled with huge debt. All this at a time when our young people are facing increasing unemployment and anxiety about the future.

"A more progressive policy to address the challenge of funding our higher education would be a business education tax levied on the top 4% of UK companies, which would generate enough annually to abolish tuition fees and take our public investment in higher education up to the average in other comparable countries."

Young Greens: Student debt widens gap between generations

The Young Greens, the youth branch of the Green Party, plan to attend a national demonstration in London on 10 November to protest against education cuts. The Young Greens are the only youth branch of a national political party listed as a supporter organization of the ‘Fund Our Future: Stop the Education Cuts' march.

Young Greens Co-chair Sam Coates said: "It's outrageous that the Coalition Government is even thinking about raising tuition fees, let alone doubling them. This amounts to a tax on students. The amount of student debt this rise will bring, along with the lack of affordable housing and high youth unemployment, is driving the gap between our generation and previous ones even wider."

Sam Coates also challenged Liberal Youth, the Liberal Democrat youth wing, to stick to their principles. "The Young Greens will be marching for free education and to show our opposition to the Coalition's cuts. If Liberal Youth are against these rises in tuition fees they should march with us on Wednesday and make sure their MPs and ministers stick to their promise of supporting free education."

Sam Coates continued: "Only through the removal of tuition fees can we expect young people to enter university without the thought of massive student debt on graduation on their minds, and with the jobs market so tough for young people, a degree is looking more and more essential."

Notes

- The UCU (University and College Union) and the NUS (National Union of Students) are jointly organising a national demonstration, 'Fund Our Future: Stop Education Cuts' on Wednesday 10 November 2010, in central London. A list of organisations that are supporting the demonstration can be found here: www.demo2010.org/supporter-organisations/







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