More than 15,000 people including teachers, education assistants and parents attended the Gloucester Park rally to protest against the Barnett Government’s savage education cuts.
Members of United Voice, the State School Teachers Union and the CPSU/CSA stood shoulder to shoulder in the rain to give a voice to the numerous children who will be affected by the cuts to education.
Graham, who works with special needs children, said he attended the rally because he disagreed with everything that Colin Barnett had done.
“I believe that all children need a good education and everybody deserves to have a secure job,” he said.
“These kids, that will be affected, deserve every chance in life they can get.
“He (Barnett) is just being a dictator.”
United Voice member Jenny said she attended the rally to represent everybody who would be affected by the cuts including education assistants, teachers, students studying teaching, school children and her own grandchildren.
“I’ve seen Colin Barnett at several rallies and he won’t even look you in the eye,” she said.
Another education assistant, who wished to remain anonymous, said that Premier Barnett needed to come and work a day in her classroom to understand the impact of his actions.
“He needs to come to my school for a day because he doesn’t understand what’s been done. He has no idea,” she said.
“He’s destroying the education system and in ten years they (The Government) are going to say oh this is a problem let’s put some money into it and fix it.
“But it’s already too late and he’s causing a major problem.
“He’s leaving behind a horrific legacy.”
United Voice Secretary Carolyn Smith addressed the crowd and urged all attendees to continue the fight.
“We have to change an arrogant government’s mind,” she said.
“I think they thought they could somehow sneak these cuts through and you wouldn’t notice.
“If we care about our kids, if we care about quality education and if we care about job security for people who work for schools we have a long fight ahead of us.
“So are we prepared to do whatever it takes to continue this fight?”
United Voice member and Education Assistant Kim also addressed the crowd and afterwards said she felt the event was a huge success.
“I feel passionate, proud and fully motivated to continue the fight,” she said.
“He (Barnett) has to roll back on these cuts because we are not accepting anything less.
“Nothing is as important as our children’s education.”
As the campaign keeps going United Voice Delegates will talk to members about next steps.
Join the Real Voices pushing to stop the cuts. Speak to the parents in your street. Speak to friends.
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