Belfast Telegraph

QUB students join Dublin fees protest

by Fiona Rutherford

Sturdents from Queen’s University have shown solidarity with their southern counterparts by joining a rally in Dublin against an increase in registration fees.

Just days after the Queen’s students protested at Stormont, they stood shoulder to shoulder with students in the Republic’s capital.

Gareth McGreevy, president of Queen's University Students' Union, spoke to the Community Telegraph from the Dublin protest.

“A number of students from the Republic have come up to support us, so we are down to show our support for them,” he said.

On Monday the students staged a protest on the steps of Stormont to oppose an increase in tuition fees.

The rally, with students from every campus in Northern Ireland, took place as a petition with 10,000 signatures against earlier student loan payments was handed to the Assembly.

“Our message is that it won’t happen in our name,” said the union president.

The SDLP’s Pat Ramsey on Monday urged the Executive to prevent the increase of £6,000 or more. “Such an increase in fees, coupled with living expenses, would increase a student’s debt to around £40,000 on completion of their degree,” he argued.

Ciaran Helferty, president of NUS-USI, said MLAs now knew the power of the student voice: “Students from hard-working families will not sit idly by and let their futures be mortgaged.”

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