15 June 2012
Baillieu booed in Ballarat
Premier Ted Baillieu faced a heated crowd of TAFE supporters when he attended a Rural Press Club of Victoria function in Ballarat today.
Premier Baillieu, along with the Mayor of Ballarat, who has refused to publically condemn the Government's $300 million TAFE cuts, were met by over 300-plus angry protestors (who managed to sound more like 500!) as they entered the club.
The demonstration caused a 20 minute hold-up of proceedings and shouts of "Save TAFE, sack Ted" of could be heard inside as Baillieu addressed the function.
Baillieu's visit came hot on the heels of a report in yesterday's Ballarat Courier that more than 2,200 Ballarat students could be denied locally provided further education under cuts to the TAFE sector.
On the same day, Advance TAFE -- which has campuses in Sale and Bairnsdale -- revealed the devastating news that it will be forced to cut 32 jobs and close eight of its smaller facilities, some within the next few weeks, as a result of the budget cutbacks. Some 36 courses will be phased out from the 215 currently taught at the institute.
The Ballarat protest was a fitting end to TAFE4All's massive regional rally tour, which saw strong turnouts at 11 campuses across the state, from Mildura to Warrnambool.
We must keep up this fight!
The AEU and NTEU are currently organising a series of metro TAFE4All rallies, culminating in a major rally in Melbourne's CBD. We will be announcing the dates shortly. WATCH THIS SPACE!!
In the meantime, please keep enouraging everyone you know to send their email to Premier Baillieu, Skills Minister Peter Hall and their local MP. Over 21,000 people have already flooded the inboxes of Victorian MPs! That's an incredible effort -- but let's keep 'em coming.
Please send and share the TAFE4All elobby now. It only takes a minute.