Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Lemon Squeezy Campaign

Students are being squeezed, hence the name of my blog title. I am absolutely stunned at our leadership's acceptance of Lord Browne's proposals on tuition fees. Today I am starting a campaign to abolish tuition fees because this is what the party pledged to do. This is important because so many students and parents of potential students voted LibDem because of this pledge. Now, the Libdems are not getting rid of fees or just keeping the cap but they are removing the cap. 
I know of some middle class people who were worried about their future and now they do not know how they will manage. Entry to University may be free but students will pay a big price for their education when they graduate. The threshold of £21,000 is a joke because it is not a lot of money. Where will people find the money to buy a house or go on holiday if they have to pay off huge student loans? What if someone with a student debt has a partner with the same? How will they manage financially? There is a book called Jilted Generation which sets out how difficult life is for the youth already. Well, life is going to get even tougher under Browne's recommendations.
I have real life examples of the students I know who are struggling  at the moment and their difficulties has inspired me to create this campaign:
1. Student 1 - Did a drama course at university and has been unable to get a job. He doesn't earn enough to repay his student loan but the worry of the debt is making him depressed.
2. Student 2 - Is doing a course at a good university and is unable to make ends meet on a student loan as it is. She works long hours outside university and still doesn't earn enough.
Please put your name and comments to this post. If you don't have a blog or account then please email me at janem510@gmail.com. I am going to send whatever I get to Liberal Youth, to add to their campaign, and to MPs.
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17 comments

  1. Maelo, I've been campaigning against the encrouchment into student (and more to the point graduate finance) for twice as long as you have been alive. That was then Thatcher first started to remove the grants and bring in the loans.

    It is the people of your age that are going to suffer most if this comes to be. There is a rebellion in the Liberal Democrats but it is not in the membership, but in the leadership. We've stood by fairness for students for all 22 years I have been in the party. I intend to honour the pledge I made as a PPC and fight the lifting of the cap, it is the least of my ambitions. I want to see tuition fees go elsewhere like we acheived in Government in Scotland.

    Education should be free at the point of entry, that runs through my veins as much as any other Liberal Democrat policy.

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  2. Two things are really crazy about life today and actually make me glad of my 45 years: 1/ Student fees, 2/ how much we pay for a place to live. Both of these have a massive effect upon the national well being and at a deeper level - national morale. No nation that endeavours to better itself on the world stage, has ever done so by making education exclusive and prohibitive; as well as limiting national mobility.

    Things do have to change and we do have to reduce the costs whilst extending access. We also have to prioritise funding and places to suit the national interest to a greater extent; which isn't so liberal.
    Alternatives to promoting traditional university education with more lifetime learning, part-time/correspondence courses and 2 year degrees, and opening up of 'subject' providers such as businesses.

    Vince ought to have sent Browne back to the drawing board with different terms of reference. But the coalition agreement allows for our MP's to abstain and to fight a second round in 2015 - which is what we should do.

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  3. Dear Stephen,
    I agree that it is my generation that will suffer the most. I'm very suprised that Clegg and Cable have agreed with Lord Browne's reccomendations so easily.
    Thankyou for posting a comment.
    Maelo

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  4. Dear John,
    Education allows for social mobility which is why i am very worried about Browne's report. I have also been thinking about how education can be provided in different ways. This country should innovate when it comes to education and skills.
    Nice to hear from you again
    Maelo

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  5. A pledge is a pledge which was signed by the Lib Dem elite! They should not go back on it, else they will have problems in future election campaigns. This is my humble opinion.
    Great blog!

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  6. Dear Libdan,
    I agree that their descision to go back on lowering tuition fees will look bad in future elections. I think that it will come up again and again just like Labour's decision about the Iraq war. I thoroughly enjoyed reading your blog.
    From
    Libdem child

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  7. Alas, I think it will have that effect on future elections for the Lib Dems.
    I enjoyed reading your blog too!

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