Family Demonstration March Against Tuition Increases Draws 30,000 Supporters

Students and faculty from Concordia University’s Communications Studies Department march in the streets of Montréal with 30,000 others (according to Le Devoir) in the Family Demonstration March against the Québec government’s proposed tuition increases.

Communications Studies students and faculty are well represented among the 30,000-strong crowd at the March 18, family demonstration. Photo by David Widgington.

students walk down St-Denis street among 30,000 others in the family protest against proposed tuition increases, Mar 18, 2012. Photo by David Widgington.

30,000 protesters in the family demonstration against tuition increases and in support of access to education walk eastward along rue Ste-Catherine past Metro Papineau. Sunday, March 18, 2012. Photo by André Querry © 2012.

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Classes & Activities Cancelled by Concordia Administration Frees Students & Faculty to Participate in Demonstration

Buildings closed and activities cancelled on Loyola and Sir George Williams campuses all of Thursday, March 22, 2012.

The following is a joint statement from the GSA and the CSU:

Earlier today, Concordia University announced that the University will close its doors on 22 March 2012 in respect of the province-wide demonstration against tuition hikes. Despite assertions of “business as usual” the message is clear: the strike is real and the strike is working.

Faculty, staff, and the wider community, are joining students in bringing the failure of the Charest government’s education policies to public light. Concordia students are coming together not only to protest what we feel deeply to be an injustice, but also to fulfill our legacy as members of a university that has earned nationwide respect for passionate engagement with and dedication to our wider community, locally, nationally, and globally.

We commend the University for removing the dilemma for students who have chosen not to participate directly in the strike for their own private reasons. With the suspension of classes and all other campus activity, all Concordia students, faculty, and staff who are against the tuition hikes can feel free to express their support of the strike without risk.

We would also like to congratulate Concordia’s administration for taking a responsible approach in minimizing the risks associated with the large crowds expected to gather around Concordia’s Sir George Williams campus Thursday morning. We expect thousands of people to fill the streets around Concordia on Thursday, including thousands of members of the Concordia community. As fraught as such situations can be we know from recent experience that students, and Concordia students in particular, will not be in a mood anger, but one of celebration of our successes and of resolve in achieving our aims.

We look forward to one of the largest demonstrations in the history of Quebec, a proud day for the students of Quebec, and a proud day for everyone at Concordia University.

Lex Gill, President
Concordia Student Union

Robert Sonin, President
Graduate Students’ Association of Concordia University

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