For freedom: demystifying terror in
A one-day seminar organised by the Postgraduate Studentís Association of Victoria University
Saturday, 10 November - 9.30am
Ground Floor Lecture Theatre 1, Rutherford House, corner Bunny Street and Featherston Street, Wellington
Confirmed speakers: Moana Jackson, Jane Kelsey, Nicky Hager and David Small PGSA members will be offered first seating in the 300-seater venue. We will hold panel discussions in addition to 45 minute speaker sessions and hope to make the symposium as interactive as possible for attendees.
The Postgraduate Studentís Association of Victoria University is mandated by its constitution to make representations to the wider community on issues that affect the wellbeing and welfare of the postgraduate community at Victoria. The freedom to speak critically as a voice of reason within the community are at the foundation of this universityís reason for being and are represented as such by being included in the Universityís Charter. The right to peaceful protest may be seen as an extension of this ideal and has been used by generations of university students both within Victoria and nationwide to highlight the unjust or inhumane treatment of different groups and communities worldwide. More recently that protest action has centred on studentís fees rises that cause a financial burden that creates hardship long after the qualification has been awarded. The ability to speak plainly, truthfully and critically should be the aim of every postgraduate qualification awarded at this and other universities. The ability to protest peacefully is also a form of dialogue that acts as a vent for frustrations that could fester into darker forms of protest action.
In view of the recent use/misuse of the Terrorism Suppression Act (2002) by police, endorsed to some degree by government holds important implications for democratic rights of individuals and communities within Aotearoa/New Zealand, and as such impacts on the wellbeing and welfare of our postgraduate community. More broadly, during their careers Victoria University postgraduates will take leadership roles at national, regional and community levels. We feel it is important to be exposed to critical and rigorous discussion of the political and social implications of the recent events in order to allow them to interrogate similar events should they occur in the future.
The PGSA is holding a one-day seminar - For Freedom: Demystifying Terror in Everyday Life in New Zealand - to be held at Victoria University on Saturday, 10 November. We feel these recent developments could have a direct and important effect on New Zealand society and present our symposium as a forum where respected academics and community spokespeople engage in these issues with us as postgraduates and as members of the wider community.
The speakers so far confirmed are: Moana Jackson, Professor Jane Kelsey, Nicky Hager and Dr David Small. We are currently hoping to secure several more speakers and hope to confirm within the next week of their availability. PGSA Executive member Pala Molisa is convenor of the symposium.