With elections for various student bodies about to begin on campuses, Resistance has been discussing its general orientation.
These elections (in 2014 for 2015) are taking place as public education faces a huge attack with the Coalition government determined to deepen the user-pays system, already entrenched by its ALP predecessors.
Since the introduction of the Higher Education Contribution Scheme, upfront tuition fees and the Voluntary Student Unionism laws, campus life has changed. The reduction (in real terms) of youth allowance (Austudy/Abstudy) has meant that students are more often then not also casual workers and sometimes part-time carers for a family member.
In this neo-liberal context, progressive and socialist tickets on campuses can get a good hearing. Many students see the value of supporting progressive activists running for student councils to fight the attacks on education, and help generate progressive change for students on the campuses.
Resistance's approach to student elections fits within its broader framework of social change through the building of mass action. This means a conscious approach to involving students in progressive campaigns (and tickets) because only when new activists are actively involved, and "taking ownership" in the campaigns, can progressive campaigns become stronger.
This approach to progressive change informs our approach to student elections.
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