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Education or Exploitation? Lancaster activists disrupt conference.

Lancaster Earth First | 11.09.2004 19:01

On Friday 10th September eight activists paid a visit to a
Corporate Venture Conference (
being hosted by Lancaster University Management School

Amongst the unsavoury characters attending the conference
were delegates from The Carlyle Group, BOC Gases (the
company that supplies poisonous gases to Huntingdon Life
Sciences), BAE Systems, Alvis, GlaxoSmithKline, Unilever,
DuPont and Shell.

The highlight of the day was the opening speech given by the
delightful Lord Sainsbury. Eager to see Mr Sainsbury
performing his Ministerial duties by welcoming corporations
into the academic world, and encouraging them to tap into
university research to boost profits, the activists entered
the lecture theatre shortly after he had begun his speech.

Banners were unfurled and the audience were informed in
simple terms as to why arms-manufacturing,
environment-destroying, GM-pushing, human rights-abusing,
animal-testing corporations should not be adding
universities to their list of “Things to Exploit”. After
being jostled out of the lecture theatre by red-faced
Management School representatives and aging security guards,
the activists loitered in the foyer for a while blowing
whistles, using a megaphone, playing a drum, and generally
causing a bit of a nuisance.

The demonstration then moved outside where banners were
displayed and leaflets were handed out to inform passers by
about the conference.

The police finally arrived and, unable to contain themselves
as usual, threatened the activists with arrest for Breach of
the Peace. One officer then got so unhappy that an activists
had answered-back, that he was forced to grab the activist,
throw him to the ground and kick him in the leg before
handcuffing and arresting him under Section 5 of the Public
Order Act. The activist has now been released and has been
issued with a fixed penalty of #80 or the chance to attend
court as a special prize for exercising his right to freedom
of expression.

Arrests aside, the activists felt they had achieved their
aims and were very satisfied with the days events. They sent
out a loud, clear message that Universities should not
become breeding-grounds for the profiteering of unethical,
exploitative corporations. However, it was a little
regretful that nobody had thought to take a pie with them…

Photos and Video to follow soon...

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Display the following 4 comments

  1. universities and arms trade corporations — - -
  2. Video from protest — Lancaster Earth First
  3. vid? — anarchoteapot
  4. use VLC to play the film — open source playaa