On 4 June, anti-cuts groups and activists from across the country will meet to discuss the way forward for the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts.
Founded in February 2010 to coordinate student anti-cuts struggles, the NCAFC gained huge recognition and influence during the big student protests last winter. However, its failure to create accountable democratic structures has prevented it from consolidating and developing.
The campaign is still organising impressive initiatives and actions, but these are spurts, rather than part of an ongoing, consistent, planned campaign.
In practice, decisions are made by a small group of activists in London, modified by discussion on email lists.
That is why the five local anti-cuts groups which initiated the 4 June conference (Royal Holloway, Hull, Merseyside, Birmingham and Newcastle) called for “democratic structures through which local groups and activists can coordinate and build an accountable national movement.” It is why Workers’ Liberty students and others will be pushing for a clear democratic national structure to democratise NCAFC and step up its campaigning.
The draft agenda for the event also includes activist training, workshops on ESOL, the London Met struggle and solidarity with workers on 30 June, and discussion on next year, including how to make sure a national demonstration against fees and cuts happens.
At a time when students face £9,000 fees and an avalanche of cuts, this conference could not be more important. Please send people from your college or university anti-cuts group, student union or other campaigning body.
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