I AM appalled by the University of York’s decision to spend staff pay which was withheld during strikes on free graduation gowns.

Students were consulted and it is thankfully being spent on students directly, however the money was raised by jeopardising students’ chances, and is subsequently only being spent on students who managed to pass their exams.

I would like leaders to investigate how many students failed to progress or graduate this summer, attributable to the industrial action.

Giving free graduation robes only rewards those whom the strikes did not affect and does nothing for the huge number of students who struggle daily with university life.

These are the students who deserve this money most, especially when support is lacklustre.

Rewarding only students who succeed, despite the University of York’s lack of services, is ablest, elitist and further reinforces the

growing stress and mental health epidemic that you reported is at the highest in our region.

Sam Biram,

University of York

computer science graduate and Green Party campaign co-ordinator,

Lower Ebor Street, York