PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- More than a hundred supporters of the group #USMFuture held a march and rally in downtown Portland, which included support from several human interest groups.
The Portland Green Independent Committee, Maine Peace Action Committee, and the Maine People's Alliance were among 20 groups listed as endorsing the event.
Maine People's Alliance Greater Portland Organizer Jenni Pirkl said the human rights to education, healthcare and housing are facing cuts because the state budget isn't set up in a fair way.
"We really love that [the group] noticed that this problem that is happening at their school is related to a much bigger problem that we're facing statewide," said Pirkl.
Students for #USMFuture are demanding the reversal of cuts and layoffs at USM, more administrative transparency, an audit of system spending, and the state funding USM needs for vitality.
"But we realize as soon as we start talking about more money from the state, people are going to say the state is broke and they're going to start pitting us against other people who also need resources," said Student Organizer Meaghan LaSala. "We're going to reject that logic."
Students for #USMFuture say their immediate goal is for the University Board of Trustees to halt faculty layoffs and department eliminations until there is an independent audit of university system spending.