It is time to Fund the Future of Higher Education. 

Aodhán Ó Ríordáin TD
21 March 2019

Labour Spokesperson on Education Senator Aodhán Ó Ríordáin has called on Ministers for Education Joe McHugh and Mary Mitchell O’Connor to wake up to the ongoing funding crisis in Higher Education. The Labour Party Supports the #FundTheFuture march happening in Dublin today and calls for fully funded higher education made by members of the Coalition for Publically Funded Higher Education which included SIPTU, USI, Fórsa, and ISSU. 

Sen Ó Ríordáin said

“The Labour Party supports today’s action in Dublin, and around the country, in support of publically funded education. It is time to Fund the Future; something Minister McHugh and Minister Mitchel O’Connor have been ignoring for years now. 

“The two Fine Gael Ministers for Education needs to get off the fence and make their position on the funding of higher education known. Fianna Fáil is afraid to make their position known, lest they upset anyone. This constant indecision by the two Government parties is ultimately hurting those directly involved. Third level institutions and students are suffering from the lack of certainty surrounding the future of funding.

“We in the Labour Party have made no secret about the fact that we believe it is time for college fees to go. Since the publication of the Cassells Report, we have argued against student loans.

“We know that employers benefit from a well-educated workforce and they should contribute just a little more towards the National Training Fund. The state should contribute a good bit more.

“My generation of students in the 1990s benefitted from Labour’s belief in free education, it is time for a whole new generation to benefit in this way too.

“Labour’s plan for full and equal access to higher education should become a reality in Ireland.”

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