Ballarat and Bendigo TAFE rallies send a clear message
TAFE staff, students and supporters gave Premier Ted Baillieu and his community cabinet the promised “warm welcome” when the Legislative Assembly sat in Ballarat and the Legislative Council in Bendigo today.
However, neither the Premier nor other government MPs ventured anywhere near either of the rallies which attracted 400 in Ballarat and 200 in Bendigo against the government cuts which rip out $20 million, 100 full-time jobs and 43 courses from the University of Ballarat TAFE and $9 million, 100 full-time jobs and 39 courses from Bendigo TAFE. Thousands of students will lose out.
The protests were organised by the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU), the Australian Education Union (AEU) and Save Ballarat TAFE and brought together staff, students, community members and supporters from other unions.
The Ballarat rally heard from NTEU Victorian Division Secretary Dr Colin Long, University of Ballarat Branch President Dr Jeremy Smith, Ballarat Trades & Labour Secretary Brett Edgington, AEU President Mary Bluett and four students.