Salient. Victoria University of Wellington Students' Newspaper. Volume 31 Number 14. June 25, 1968
Stud. Ass. may join protest — Boycott Possible
Stud. Ass. may join protest
A special general meeting of the VUW Students' Association to start at 7.30 tonight will decide whether the Association will officially endorse the protest march to Parliament tomorrow.
It is expected that an amendment accompanying the motion will call students to boycott lectures during the afternoon.
These moves are the result of student support for the Committee on Vietnam and trade union demonstrations which will coincide with the opening of Parliament tomorrow.
The meeting will also decide whether the Association has confidence in the Government's handling of the economy and of University affairs.
The organiser of the march, Owen Gager, Chairman of the Vietnam Peace Committee said the march would leave from between the SUB and the Hunter Building at 1 p.m. regardless of whether it has official support.
Owen said the committee believed that "no confidence in the Government on every possibly issue must be the theme of tomorrow's strike and demonstration.
"The Government's pretence of having a foreign policy is totally exposed by its present failure to have a domestic policy.
"We will be demonstrating to show our support for the NZ worker and to join the unions in creating the electoral climate which will reject the Holyoake Government," said Mr. Chris Wainwright, President of the newly-formed Socialist Club.
He said a demonstration by workers and students would not change the Government's policy regarding the income of the wage earner, nor the undemocratic structure of educational decision-making in New Zealand.
"One thing we hope it will do is show others, and the demonstrators themselves, that they are not the sad-eyed ruminants who gaze dolefully on their own plight as they have previously been led to believe.
"The workers and students have power and must be encouraged to use it." Mr Wainwright said.
The failure of the Arbitration Court to issue even a token wage increase was termed "the most serious breakdown of the system of income distribution in the post-1890 New Zealand capitalist economy," by a Spartacist Club spokesman, Nevil Gibson
"The cult of the "little man' who is against both 'big labour' and 'big capital' which is the ideology used to unite small-scale business and craft labour unions against social change has collapsed.
"A successful strike and demonstration could mark 'the beginning of a re-making of NZ politics.
"The Spartacist Club opposes all efforts to limit the objectives of tomorrow's action to 'reform the arbitration system—Kirk's line— or to call things off if the Employers Federation goes in for secret diplomacy with the Trade Union bureaucrats— Toby Hill's line."
A spokesman for the Labour Club, Anthony Haas, said, "The workers' cry for a more reasonable hearing is completely justified in view of the Arbitration Court's thoroughly bad decision.
"Students need increased support for accommodation shortages, which, like bursary levels, discriminate against the less fortunate obtaining access to higher education."
The President of the National Club, Bill Logan, said that the Club would not be demonstrating "either in support of, or against, the Government."
He said he thought the Court of Arbitration's decision was "unfortunate", but the Government's handling of economic and educational policy was "better than could be expected of any alternative Government."