Sheffield students disrupt careers fair to protest the university’s ties to arms companies

Sheffield Action Group said it will target all careers fairs until all ties are cut

Students from Sheffield Action Group disrupted University of Sheffield’s careers event this morning to protest the university’s ties to arms companies.

The group held banners up at the front of the fair that said “get military out”, blocking students in attendance from seeing a presentation.

The protest is specifically in relation to the university’s ties with Boeing, Rolls Royce and Thales. Sheffield Action Group (SHAG) claim that the university has received over £72 million from arms companies since 2012 and a further £1.1 million from Thales alone. The protestors claim that Thales allegedly supplies Russia with arms.

SHAG say they will target all careers fairs on campus until the university meets their demands and cuts all ties with companies that deal with arms.

This disruption of the careers fair comes after the group occupied a corridor in The Hicks Building last night in solidarity with striking lecturers.

This is not the first time SHAG has occupied a university building. Earlier this year, the group occupied The Diamond Building on University of Sheffield’s campus, again calling for the university to cut ties with arms dealers.

A spokesperson from the University of Sheffield, said: “The university has a wide range of research, development and learning partnerships that work to further innovation, provide opportunities for students and find solutions to some of the world’s most pressing challenges.

“Our connections with industrial partners mean we can help to influence positive change and accelerate more sustainable manufacturing practices – making things faster, cheaper and greener to support our regional and national economy. For example, our work in high-performance lightweight materials has led to the production of lighter, more fuel-efficient cars and planes.

“We have a code of ethics for all of our research and innovation, which ensures there is rigorous governance in place.

“We are also committed to providing our students with information about a wide range of organisations offering placements and graduate jobs at our careers fairs, so they can make personal informed decisions about their future careers.”

A spokesperson for Rolls Royce said: “Rolls-Royce acts with integrity and strictly abides by all export control regulations that apply to our business and will continue to follow UK Government guidelines.”

The Tab Sheffield contacted Boeing and Thales for comment. 

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Featured image via @sheffaction on Twitter.