Sabb attacks charity event, branding organisers ‘scabs’

UCLU Education and Campaigns Officer Edwin Clifford-Coupe has attacked tomorrow’s charity coffee morning for Macmillan Cancer Support, accusing the organisers of  “scabbing.”

The event was set up by students to provide coffee to students during the closure of all UCLU cafes and bars tomorrow for International Workers Day, as well as to raise money for Macmillan, a prominent cancer support charity.

However Clifford-Coupe has taken exception to the decision by Starbucks to provide free coffee to the event, saying that “allowing a corporation to cynically get on board so as to advertise to students…is scabbing”.

Event organiser Louisa Townson, a PhD student at UCL, hit back, stating that Starbucks had been the only business in the area able to provide coffee for the event and that this was in no way conditional upon them obtaining publicity, adding that she feels UCLU “has hit a new low”.

“I personally find it incredible that a UCLU Sabb can have the gall to call me a scab for dedicating my own time to organizing a charitable event on campus,” she told The Tab, 

“This is a coffee morning with the dual purpose of providing students with cheap coffee while UCLU closes (whatever your views on that) and to raise money for an incredible charity. Without this charity one of the hardest years of my life would’ve been unimaginably more difficult…I fail to see how this makes me a ‘scab'”.

Meanwhile Tory Soc president Matt Corner accused Clifford-Coupe of “emotional blackmail” by accusing students who buy coffee at the event of supporting worker’s rights abuses.

In a statement laced with political rhetoric, Clifford-Coupe also accused the event of being an extension of David Cameron’s ‘Big Society’ initiative, which he claims has had a “devastating effect” on charities and the public sector as a whole.

Townson subsequently deleted Clifford-Coupe’s comments from the Facebook page for the event, stating that she did not want it to be politicised. The coffee morning will run tomorrow as planned outside the Print Room Cafe from 10:30 am.