Sussex University management: Stop the cuts to our students’ union!

Sussex University management: Stop the cuts to our students’ union!

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Connor Moylett started this petition to Adam Tickell and

Our societies are being starved of funding. Our sports teams are having to reject hundreds of keen members. Prices in the bars and shop keep going up. Now the university wants to drastically reduce what little money our union has.

Students and staff, sign the petition and let university management know that we will not accept cuts to our students’ union.

Sussex Students Union is vital to this university. Through supporting our societies, sports teams and social spaces the SU is the heart of the university and brings together students from across campus. Each of us is only likely to see a tiny fraction of the incredible things that go on around Falmer House - in any one day the SU is home to salsa practice and language exchange, table tennis socials and consent workshops. Our union also does the vital work of supporting and advocating for students in their time of need be this academic, financial or personal. For many students like myself, the SU and the communities it supports are inseparable from my experience of Sussex. It’s where we meet our friends; its where we learn to organise and question; its where we find the resources, people and support that we need.

Sussex University management need to show they care and reverse damaging cuts immediately.

Like others across the country, Sussex SU receives the majority of its funding from the University in the form of a block grant. This funding has, until recently, been tied to student numbers. As the amount of students has gone up so too has money for student activities. This yearly adjustment is essential as the union has struggled to adapt to a near doubling of student numbers in just ten years. In 2019 this all changed with management electing to freeze the block grant and cut our budget.

Things could be about to get a lot worse. The university has called ‘negotiations’ with the union in which they intend to propose 5-10% cuts. At the same time the university has decided to implement a fixed 5-year budget-setting system. If we do not make our voices heard now then university management may lock in these cuts until 2025. This while the university continues to grow, with plans to add another 3000 students in the next few years.

The SU cannot survive with more students and less money.

Already the union is finding it very difficult to provide for its members. In the last few years society funding has been cut by 1/3, down from 30 to £20 000. In 2018/19 our sports reps granted their full budget of £10 000 but received a total of £19 000 in applications. For a little context, just one international post-grad student now pays as much as £19000 per-year to study at Sussex. For even more context, Adam Tickell the Vice Chancellor earns more than our entire sports and society budget in one month. Our bars and shops see rising prices and student-staff workers are still paid less than a living wage. We desperately need more funding if the SU is to keep functioning in a way that works for students.

We need a public guarantee from the university that funding for the SU will continue to rise with student numbers. Student satisfaction is everything to the university. Let’s show University management that we are not satisfied with its plans to shrink our union!

  • Please Sign and share the petition
  • Consider writing to the Vice Chancellor at vc@sussex.ac.uk
  • We will be in touch with all who sign with more details and plans to take this fight further

Connor Moylett

Sussex Student Union Council Chair

 

0 have signed. Let’s get to 500!
At 500 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!