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University of Sussex protest a 'waste of time'
University bosses have told students that their campus protest is pointless.
In a meeting with the University of Sussex’s Registrar, they were told that the privatisation of campus jobs was a done deal.
Students have occupied the university’s Bramber Building for three weeks in protest at the move to outsource catering and facility management jobs.
However, Registrar John Duffy told the protesters that they had no plans to take legal action to evict them.
A university spokeswoman said: “He made clear that the university is going through a properly defined process in discussion with trade unions and affected staff.
“He also made clear that the goal of the university continues to be to improve catering and facilities management at Sussex by working with high-quality external partners and that an occupation by a small group of students does not stop that process going forward.”
She added that there were no immediate plans to use legal means for evictions.
However, she said that did not mean the university is happy for them to stay indefinitely.
The campaign has attracted attention both at a national and international level.
Support has been received from universities around the world including messages from famous faces such as Noam Chomsky, Frankie Boyle and Peter Capaldi.
A number of well-known supporters have even visited them in the university conference centre, including the likes of comedian Josie Long, writer Will Self and Pavilion MP Caroline Lucas.
A spokesman for the students condemned Mr Duffy’s responses.
He said: “The fact that |they are blatantly ignoring us despite all the support says |it all.
“The university is supposed to be a democratic institution but they don’t want to listen to us – the majority.
“We have been told that no matter how far we take this, they won’t change their policy.
“This will spur us on even more. Morale is better than ever and we have strong support both on and off campus.
“They hope this will just fizzle out. That is not going to happen.”
A mass protest is planned to mark the three-week anniversary of the occupation at 1pm today.