Chilean Students Protest Metro Fare Increase
Since Monday, high school students in Chile’s capital have been staging protests over the increase in Metro prices. They have organized in large numbers by utilizing the hashtag #EvasionMasiva over the course of the last three days.
Police response has been both swift and violent with students blocking trains, barreling past fair turnstiles, and rattling the entry gates.
However, the activism by Chilean students is not new. Back in April, thousands of university age students took to the streets of Santiago to defend free education. They rallied to air their grievances against President Sebastián Piñera, and his anti-student policies.
According to the AP, those marches came on the heels of the Chilean constitutional court’s decision to overturn a law that prohibited for-profit companies from controlling universities.
This is not the first go-around for Piñera. His track record with students has been less than stellar. The conservative billionaire’s previous term (2010-2014) was marred by massive student protests seeking an education overhaul. With conditions intensifying, one can’t help but wonder if Chile is headed down the same road again.
While inconvenient for subway riders, but current protests have managed to cause quite a stir and serve as a testament to the resolve of the Chilean youth. Only time will tell what happens next.