Here is an letter that is being circulated by the Socialist Workers’ Party aligned bloc of the NEC of the UCU:
Statement of support for student occupations over Gaza from members of the UCU union NEC
As members of the University and College Union National Executive Committee, we would like to send solidarity greetings to the students in the 17 universities who have occupied their universities in protest over the Gaza crisis. This is the largest wave of occupations for over a quarter of a century. Too often, the media seek to portray this generation of students as ones who do not share the aspirations of the 1968 generation – and deride you as, “Generation Apathy”. Your actions have decisively dispelled this myth.
Your demands to secure disinvestment by universities from companies involved in selling arms to Israel and free scholarships for students from Gaza show your humanity. You speak for the millions of young people throughout the world who are sick and tired of war and injustice, who simply desire a world in which the young grow up not knowing what it is like to kill and maim.
You are an inspiration to us all and we wish you every success and call upon all those who want a more peaceful world to support your action.
Signatories (all in a personal capacity)
The Socialist Workers’ Party has spent the last four years focussed on its attempt to pass an unlawful and discriminatory boycott against Israeli Jews, while the pay and conditions of university and college staff has been ignored.
But that wasn’t enough for them.
Now they’re in favour of causing havoc within universities, to blackmail them into adopting the Socialist Workers’ Party’s political agenda.
In fact, a high proportion of these individuals are not university lecturers at all. They teach at FE colleges.
They include not only familiar faces like Tom Hickey, but also UCU’s President Sasha Callaghan and Vice President, Alan Whitaker.
There is something you can do to fight back.
Alternatively, does anybody fancy forming a union for university members, which is not run by Socialist Workers Party activists with jobs in FE colleges?