Students Outraged at Escalating Government Cutbacks

News Staff - Mon Mar 02, 2020

Edmonton, AB (March 2, 2020) - The University of Alberta Students’ Union (UASU) is deeply concerned that the Government of Alberta has cut the University of Alberta base grant funding by 11%, on top of the 6.9% in-year cut last fall. Students will experience drastic and unavoidable consequences as a result of these shortsighted funding reductions.

“We’re talking about hundreds of jobs lost,” said UASU President Akanksha Bhatnagar. “Our instructors, the support staff who help us graduate, even our friends and family members. Job losses rip the carpet out from under whole communities, and our community is on the chopping block. These disproportionate cuts are out of touch with real needs. Minister Nicolaides needs to start listening to students instead of hearing what he wants to hear.”

A one-fifth reduction in base grant funding means that the University of Alberta is losing roughly $110 million within a few months (not counting another $35 million in infrastructure funding, which was promised but never received). The UASU warns that these cuts will significantly and negatively impact quality of education, vital student services, and many of the outcomes linked to the government’s new performance-based funding model.

“We’ve filed freedom of information requests with the Ministry of Advanced Education,” said Adam Brown, UASU Vice-President (External). “We want to know who the government is consulting with, because it sure isn’t the people that these cuts will hurt.”

The Students’ Union is the official representative of more than 32,000 undergraduate students at the University of Alberta. It acts as a strong advocate for students both on campus and at all levels of government.

For more information, or to arrange an interview, contact:

Robert Nelson
External Advocacy Advisor
University of Alberta Students’ Union

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