The #CopsOffCampus demonstration and occupation has continued for a second day in response to Wednesday night’s Free Education protest which culminated in conflict between police and protesters.
At 2.00pm on Friday 5 December, around 50 individuals gathered in Warwick University’s central piazza in a gesture of solidarity with those protesters who are continuing to occupy the Rootes building.
Reports suggest that the occupiers spent the entire night protesting within the building.
Warwick’s Students’ Union (SU) has released a statement outlining their own actions in response to the ongoing occupation.
According to the statement, “Sabbatical Officers are helping them (the occupiers) liaise with the University to ensure access to food and sanitary facilities.”
In comparison to the original #CopsOffCampus demonstration staged yesterday, today’s protest failed to make the same impact. As a smaller protest, it had faded out after an hour.
However, witnesses report that up to 15 protesters successfully entered the Rootes building via an emergency exit.
Exactly how the protesters were able to enter the building after a shut-down had been declared by security remains unclear.
Details of the response undertaken by the University’s security force have also yet to emerge.
Chris Davies, a second-year History student, thought that today’s protest was not very effective.
“It was pretty underwhelming. I don’t think Warwick University students have the appetite for the kind of protest the occupiers were hoping for. There were obviously a handful of committed people but not enough to make it effective.” (Chris Davies)
In additional news, the University has taken the decision to temporarily re-close the Rootes Learning Grid as a precaution. Most study spaces, however, are back open for general student use.
Updates to follow.