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18 April 2019 | Story Rulanzen Martin

The Institute for Reconciliation and Social Justice IRSJ) has initiated a Social Justice Week at the University of the Free State (UFS), which started on Friday 12 April  until Wednesday 17 April 2019. 

Ten key events took place during the week. It ranged from dialogues, workshops, talk shows, debates, and interactive displays and events on issues of multilingualism and diversity, social innovation, engaged scholarship, the Fourth Industrial Revolution, gender sensitisation, sexual consent, sexual preparedness, universal access, disability, anti-discrimination, and security.

There was also a round-table discussion on 17 April 2019 with various UFS stakeholders on off-campus student security as well as an inter-institutional discussion on the same topic. The UFS Debating Society will take on the topic of the UFS Language Policy, while Olga Barends from the Free State Centre for Human Rights will host a dialogue on sexual consent.

The IRSJ has also designed and implemented SOJO-VATION: Social Innovation/ Social Change, which strives to create a foundational platform where ideas of social justice, innovation, and engaged scholarship at the UFS and in society can be hosted. SOJO-VATION partners with the Office for Student Leadership, Development, and Community Engagement.

The collaborating partners for the Social Justice Week includes various UFS stakeholders such as the Sasol library, the Gender and Sexual Equity Office, UFS Protection Services, the Free State Centre for Human Rights, the Student Representative Council (SRC), the Office for Student Leadership Development, Kovsie Innovation, GALA, the FFree State Centre for Human Rights, SRC Associations, the Office for Student Governance, Kovsie Innovate, Start-Up-Grind, EVC, EBL, Community Engagement, the Institutional Transformation Plan (ITP) Dialogues Office, Residence Dialogues, UFS Debating Society, Debate Afrika!, the Center for Universal Access and Disability Support (CUADS), and the Gateway Office. 

News Archive

Statement in the media on 14 January 2016 by national student structures about national student protests
2016-01-15

The University of the Free State takes cognisance of the decision by national student structures on 14 January 2016 that protests should stop and students return to studies. Here are selections from a transcription of the press conference, followed by a link to the full and complete transcript:

“The PYA calls for Back to School... The Progressive Youth Alliance, Sasco, YCL, ANC Youth League, call upon students from all walks of life to use the systems provided by government and not delay their future any longer unnecessarily. There is no reason at all for strikes to continue when people's government has addressed the main immediate concerns of students...

“Members of PYA, Sasco, ANC Youth League, and the Young Communist League, and all progressive forces, should defend the interests and gains of students who marched genuinely for FeesMustFall last year. They must make sure that students are on the concession provided by government and go back to class and wait for the report from the commission [on free higher education recently established by President Zuma]...

“Students should be decisive and reject dark forces that seek to delay them further, and students should play their part by ensuring that they focus on their academic studies, and take the opportunity provided through this additional loans and bursaries to successfully complete their studies...

“Students can no longer delay their studies. They must be allowed to write their examinations - those who did not write last year - and those who need to register, must register and go back to class. We will regroup ten months into the year when the report of free higher education has been released, to consider its content...

“Fees have indeed fallen, access must rise, and all students must go back to school.”
 
Link to complete transcript: http://ow.ly/X5ViR

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