Resistance: Young Socialist Alliance (RYSA) released the following statement on October 27 in support of the Fossil Free UTas occupation.
The following day Fossil Free UTas announced that they were ending the occupation and restarting negotiations after two days of productive meetings with the university management.
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In the face of the ongoing ecological crisis unleashed by the drive for corporate profits, RYSA would like to express its support for the campaign calling on universities and other public institutions to divest from fossil fuels and our solidarity with students who are locked in the struggle to force universities to divest.
In particular, we welcome and encourage students at the University of Tasmania, who have engaged in an ongoing occupation of the vice-chancellor's office and called for the university to end its investment in fossil fuels. RYSA believes that when young people organise, they can change the world, and the activists at UTas are an example of the power young activists have when they work collectively.
RYSA calls on all universities, which are institutions that receive enormous public funding, to withdraw all investment from fossil fuels and end all research and development partnerships that serve the needs of these polluting industries.
Ultimately students, staff and the community will not be able to fully control what universities invest in until these institutions are given over to democratic control. Education should serve the needs of students and community, and work towards building a more just and sustainable society for the future.
The campaign for divestment is another step along the path for an education system that serves people not profits.