On eve of G8 and G20 Summits, representatives of more than 150 million
students release public statement on the global summits

OTTAWA, June 24 /CNW Telbec/ - On the eve of meetings of the G8 and G20, students' organisations from across the world, collectively representing more than 150 million secondary and post-secondary students, have released a public statement calling for a commitment to education and public services.

"Protecting public services and investing in education are vital to building a secure and prosperous global future," said David Molenhuis, National Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. "Students from across the world are united in calling on the leaders of the G8 and G20 to invest in people and the planet, not privatise public services and resources."

The statement contains a set of principles shared by students across the world. The principles are centred on the importance of education and other public services in building global equality and economic prosperity, and the responsibility of all countries to work together to uphold them. The statement calls on the leaders of the G8 and G20 to:

    
        -  chart a course for the global economy that prioritises these
           principles;

        -  establish plans to meet the principle of the United Nations
           Covenant on Social, Economic and Cultural Rights that states
           "Higher education shall be made equally accessible to all, on the
           basis of capacity, by every appropriate means, and in particular
           by the progressive introduction of free education."

        -  propose bold action to combat global poverty; make real progress
           to prevent global warming and transform the global economic and
           financial system to create a fair and sustainable world.
    

"Most members of the G8 and G20, including Canada, have a dismal record on equality of access to education," added Molenhuis. "Charting a course for the new economy that is centred around strong public services, including education, should be a top priority for all political leaders."

The statement was endorsed by Canada's national students' union, the Canadian Federation of Students as well as the United States Students' Association, Continental Organisation of Latin-American and Caribbean Students, European Students' Union, All Africa Students' Union, General Union of Arab Students, Asia Pacific Student Association and other unions. Collectively, these organisations represent over 150 million students across the globe.

The statement is available for download at www.cfs-fcee.ca/g8g20statement.pdf

Founded in 1981, the Canadian Federation of Students is Canada's oldest and largest students' organisation, uniting over one-half million students from all ten provinces.

SOURCE Canadian Federation of Students

For further information: For further information: or to arrange an interview, please contact: Noah Stewart, Spokesperson (Toronto - G20 Media Centre), 613-889-7395 (cellular); David Molenhuis, National Chairperson (Ottawa), 613-232-7394 (office)


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