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Scottish Liberal Democrats back NUS fund our future campaign

January 21, 2013 12:57 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Liam McArthur Robin Parker Willie RennieLiam McArthur Robin Parker Willie RennieScottish Liberal Democrat MSPs have formally given their support to NUS "Fund our future" campaign. The party has consistently criticised the SNP government for its plans to cut £34.6 million out of the college budget at a time when unemployment remains far too high and demand is outstripping supply.

Commenting on the campaign, Scottish Liberal Democrat education spokesperson Liam McArthur MSP said:

"SNP Ministers are choosing to cut £34.6 million from the college budget at a time when youth unemployment remains too high. Only recently Scottish Liberal Democrats obtained figures which revealed colleges are being forced to turn away thousands of suitable applicants due to a lack of places.

"Our colleges are pivotal to equipping people with the skills they need to get on in life, and to developing the skilled workforce needed to strengthen our economy. NUS Scotland's Fund Scotland's Future campaign is a great vehicle for existing and would-be students alike to make their voices heard by the Education Secretary. As he was last year, Mr Russell has been far too dismissive of the concerns in the college sector.

Robin Parker, President of NUS Scotland, said:

"We welcome the Scottish Liberal Democrats decision to support our campaign to reverse the proposed cuts to college budgets. By making the reversal of these cuts a priority in the budget negotiations and supporting students, the Scottish Liberal Democrats are standing alongside thousands of students, lectures and community members who believe that colleges need to be protected.

"Colleges in Scotland are providing people of all ages the opportunity to develop skills they need to find work during difficult economic times. With such high levels of unemployment, the role of colleges is now more important than ever. If we want to protect students in Scotland, we must protect colleges.

"As the budget vote draws closer, we urge people throughout Scotland to continue contacting MSPs from every political party about the college cuts through the Fund Scotland's Future website. We also urge MSPs who have yet to join the campaign to listen to the many students, lecturers and community members contacting them every day, and reverse the proposed £34.6m cuts to colleges."