If you thought Torontonians were done protesting Doug Ford education cuts, think again. Ryerson University students are taking to the streets of downtown Toronto this Wednesday to take part in “strike action,” a one-day protest against the funding cuts made by the Ford government. Students of the university, which is located downtown, began setting up picket lines in front of Ryerson’s Student Learning Centre on Yonge Street in an attempt to raise awareness about the Ontario government’s alleged attacks on students.
Organizers have also noted that students at York University and OCAD University are scheduled to hold demonstrations on their respective campuses today. The organization is also reassuring students that they will not be penalized for skipping classes.
Those running the event also listed their demands on the Instagram page for their protest, which include stopping the OSAP cuts, eliminating tuition fees for all, restoring funding to universities, cancelling all student debt, and supporting students' right to reject Ford’s “Student Choice Initiative.”
“Since January, when the Ford government announced what would amount to an over-$600 million cut in post-secondary education spending, students have been told they must live with less so Premier Ford can cut taxes for his wealthy friends,” the Ryerson Student Strike Committee stated in a news release issued this week.
It appears as though the students were inspired by the 2012 Quebec student protests in which students protested for months against a proposal by the Quebec Cabinet to raise university tuition from $2,168 to $3,793 between 2012 and 2018.
Hermes Azam, Chair of the Ryerson Student Strike Committee, told CP24: “We are going to be speaking to all the students as they come through, talking to them about the cuts, how it is so important that we go on strike, that we revive those traditions in English Canada that were so successful in Quebec.”
Ford's government has yet to issue a response to the student's call for action.