european students’ union

BM77: Student Precarity in France

December 20, 2019

On the 8th of November 2019, a 22 year old student set himself on fire in front of a university restaurant in France. It was a political act to protest against the lack of response and priority of the French government to fight against the precarious situation that students are suffering from. This dramatic act illustrates the critical situation that students in France are forced to face within their social context. The numbers are shattering, half the students have to skip meals, 1 out of 3 already cannot afford medical care themselves and another 20% are living below the poverty line.  

 La FAGE has been warning the government for several years now about the precarious situation of students in France. La FAGE developed palliative solutions such as implementing Agoraés (social and solidarity grocery stores) on campus together with national policy recommendations, however as the problem persists, to this day the government chose not to recognise and answer to La FAGE’s proposals with good enough solutions. 

 After this dramatic act, la FAGE have been protesting along with other Students’ Organizations, asking for the government to take immediate action. 

 The mission of the European Student Union (ESU) is to promote the social, economical, political and cultural interests of students along with advocating for students’ rights on several European bodies and agencies determined to improve the status and welfare of students in society. With this mission ESU pledges to provide its assistance and support to its member national students unions around Europe in their work to protect student interests. 

 In accordance with ESU’s Policy on improving the Social Dimension of Higher Education and the commitment of national educational authorities towards the Bologna Process, ESU resolves to stand in solidarity against state disregard towards student precarity in France, and supports the following demands made to the French government:

  

  • An immediate increase of the students’ grants.
  • Call for national reform of the Higher Education Social Welfare and Grant System that includes all educational stakeholders within the decision making processes. 
  • Substantial and tangible targets to increase the number, availability and accessibility of student social housing. 
  • Access to a free health care management system.

 

Finally, ESU reminds the French national education authority that they, as founding members of the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) since its inception in 1999, must implement the Ministerial Goals to improving the Social Dimension of Higher Education, if they stand by their commitment to ending student precarity in France. 

Proposed by: FAGE

Seconded by: CREUP, KSU, POFEN, FEF

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