University Student Protests Met with Violent Government Reaction

by Project Censored
Published: Updated:

Since early 2010, the students at the University of Puerto Rico have been protesting against a proposed fee. The government decided to start charging a “Fiscal Stabilization Fee” to help offset the effects of the weak economy. Many of the University’s students are against this fee because they feel it is an attempt by the government to try to privatize education. Students and law enforcement officers came to blows in January 2011 when the fee was supposed to take effect. The students at the University of Puerto Rico were on an indefinite strike until the school and the government could come to an agreement. The students were protesting when local police and SWAT teams were called in by the government. This came as a surprise to the student body, since the school is supposed to be autonomous. Students at the University of Puerto Rico are asking the Governor to cancel the fee and find other ways of financing the school. Several organizations throughout the country, including the professors at the University of Puerto Rico, are supporting the students in their decision, because they feel all students should have a right to an education. The government refuses to acknowledge the fee as a problem, because they say the protest has little to do with education, and is more of a political movement by extremists.

Student Researcher: William Briggs
Faculty Instructor: Elliot Cohen, Ph.D.
Indian River State College
Sources:
Schepers, E. (2011). Student strike in Puerto Rico met with repression. People’s world. Retrieved from: http://peoplesworld.org/student-strike-in-puerto-rico-met-with-repression/.
Sieben, L. (2011). Students resume protests against fees at U. of Puerto Rico. Chronicle of higher education. Retrieved from: http://chronicle.com/article/Students-Resume-Protests/126299/?sid=at&utm_source=at&utm_medium=en.