Today NUS launched our biggest ever General Election campaign called Vote for Students. Between now and the election we will seek to register, educate and mobilise thousands of students nationwide, ensuring our members are fully informed about the position of the candidates seeking their votes.
Students represent 15% of the voting population, yet too often our voice goes unheard. Many students fail to get registered on the electoral roll and many are simply ignored by local candidates who choose not to engage a significant percentage of their constituency.
Well, not this time.
This election is tipped to be one of the closest elections in a decade, and our votes could mean the difference between someone winning and losing. That is why NUS is today launching the Vote for Students website. We are asking students, parents and general members of the public to join us and fight against a rise in fees by committing to using their vote to protect education and protect future students. Those that sign up to the site will be informed before polling day about where each of their candidates stand on the issue of fees, helping to educate voters, and keep our issues at the forefront of this general election campaign.
Last November (see “Come Clean on Fees Blog below) we issued a warning to candidates. We urged MPs and PPCs to Come Clean on Fees and sign the NUS Funding our Future pledge stating that they would; “pledge to vote against any increase in fees in the next parliament and to pressure the government to introduce a fairer alternative”. Since our emergency lobby of parliament we have had over 200 MPs and PPCs sign up, with more joining the list every single day.
The Vote for Students website is a crucial tool in our long standing fight for a fairer funding system. Students have determined election results before and we can certainly do it again. I hope you will join us in the fight against a rise in fees, pledge to use your vote and together help protect and preserve education for the students of today and tomorrow.
For more information about the site and how you can get involved in the campaign, click here.
To pledge to use your vote for students go to here.
To see how your students’ union can be involved, click here.
I will be keeping you up to date here with my work on this campaign, which I am making my priority within my NUS work for the next few months. I plan also to blog more generally on the events on the run up to the election and hope to spark some comment and debate on here. So get involved, get registered, and get voting in 2010.
(via Susan Nash’s blog, with some edits)