In recent weeks, a number of concerns have been raised within the academic community. The Executive Board has taken note of these concerns and has presented a 10-point plan to address them.
Over the last few weeks, numerous talks have taken place at the faculties with the action groups, the representative advisory bodies, the unions, students and staff. On the basis of these talks, the aforementioned parties have assumed responsibility for two committees.
The highlighted issues are being tackled across the university. We have now reached the next stage wherein we will work together to find constructive and joint solutions. It is in everyone’s interest to do so effectively, to deal with the existing concerns and to work in union on modernising the university.
After six weeks, and after much progress had been made, the time had come to also negotiate an end to the occupation of the Maagdenhuis. The level of safety and security within the Maagdenhuis has deteriorated of late. Last week, two incidents took place that necessitated direct intervention by the police. Moreover, the UvA is concerned about the state of the building – besides it being increasingly damaged, confidential files are also freely accessible. Last night, an agreement with the occupiers seemed within grasp after a delegation of De Nieuwe Universiteit and the UvA’s Executive Board reached a settlement. In the end, a (section) of the DNU followers rejected this agreement, as became evident during a press conference this morning.
The Executive Board laments this. The delegation that was spoken to accepted the agreement and the negotiators – as promised – stood behind this agreement and fully defended it. Besides rejecting the negotiating agreement, some of the occupiers this morning announced that they would step up their protests. The Executive Board is also saddened by this stance. With this, the constructive talks with them seem to have come to an end.
The Executive Board therefore has no choice but to conclude that no other options exist but to issue a warning to the occupiers to immediately vacate the Maagdenhuis. If they fail to do so, the UvA will take further measures. It seemed like this could have been averted through proper negotiation, but this has unfortunately proven to be impossible.
Coinciding with this morning’s events, this first meeting took place on the creation of the new committees. With this, a new stage has been reached, one in which the parties will work together in constructive partnership on modernising the university. We look forward to taking part in this endeavour and will continue to do so with them.