Six campaigners who barricaded themselves inside a campus chamber go through disciplinary procedure
The students are being put through the university’s disciplinary procedure this week after they barricaded themselves in the Senate Chamber in November.
About 50 students, under the banner of Defend Education Birmingham, shut themselves into the chamber, protesting against the lack of democracy in the university, the treatment and pay of staff, and the privatisation of the student loan book, amongst other issues.
A wave of similar protests took part at 10 other universities.
The occupation was ended in the early hours of November 28 by on-site security, police and bailiffs and the university obtained a court order banning the students from staging another occupation for the next year or face arrest and imprisonment.
It has now emerged that out of the group who took part in the occupation, six have been singled out to face potential punishment.
Students and staff have been quick to criticise this move.
Hattie Craig, Vice President of Education at the Guild of Students, said the group affected had been offered help from them.
She said: “It’s clear that the university is doing everything it can to prevent the campaign from continuing.
“These students have legitimate concerns and I think that the response is unacceptable. The threat of potential expulsion is obviously causing an incredible amount of stress for the students.
“Many of them are in their final year and are currently writing their dissertations. This is creating a great deal of unnecessary pressure. They were trying to improve the university.”
Kelly Rogers, a student , said: “This response is totally disproportionate. This was a peaceful protest highlighting serious concerns of students and staff yet they’re treating six students as if they were criminals.”