A letter from Michael Chessum, ULU President:
You are receiving this email because you are a member or contact of University of London (ULU). I’m the ULU President and I’m writing to you to ask for your help in saving your Union as a student controlled space, with campaigns, societies and services democratically decided by students. We are holding our first big campaign planning meeting this Wednesday (i.e. TOMORROW) at 6pm in The Venue in the ULU building. Please visit the Facebook page, come along and spread the word if you can.
In May, the University of London decided – with almost no input from students – to shut down its students' union. ULU is – in terms of membership – the biggest students' union in Europe, with over 120,000 members. It has existed since 1921, and is the only union which has a record of building links and representing students in London to local government and other institutions. It is often the only kind of support that students in smaller institutions have. Under University plans, our campaigns – on everything including student housing, workers rights, liberation and defending education – would end.
Democracy is one of the most precious aspects of our education, and we cannot allow student representation to simply be abolished.
You may have been told that ULU’s services and societies are going to be kept on. This is not necessarily the case: the University is currently claiming both that there will be no cuts and that ULU’s current operation duplicates local student unions. False hope is in no-one’s interests: if ULU closes, it is perfectly possible that societies funding could be cut, or bars or other services closed. The only way to be sure of our future is to stop the University from doing what it is planning to do.
We are fighting for a vibrant, democratic, well-resourced union. We want to see a union that represents all students in London take over the ULU building, and we want it to make students’ lives, and London in general, better and more equal.
In order to win that – and to secure for the students who come after us the same opportunities and rights as we had – we need your help. More than your help, we need you to come in and run the campaign to save your union.
To get involved, come to the meeting this Wednesday at 6pm in the Venue. If you can’t come, just respond to this email and ask to be kept in touch. We have also called a major demonstration on November 13, and will be calling a referendum of ULU’s members in later November.
Michael Chessum, ULU President.
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