Letters to the Editor: How UC has exploited the student academic workers on strike
The UC Academic Workers have returned to work this morning after a strike that began on Feb. 23. The strike was triggered by the University of California board of regents decision to slash tenured worker pensions, which was approved in February. This decision was a continuation of UC’s long-standing policy of cutting costs in many areas, and was aimed at reducing student enrollment growth.
The Academic Workers are calling for a halt to cuts and the removal of the Regents’ decision; the strike has had a tremendous effect on many students, and there’s no doubt that many would likely give up studies and drop-out if not for the strike.
Since the strike began, I have been sending letters to the editors of several Bay Area daily newspapers, asking them to support the Academic Workers and the UC Academic Workers.
The letter from the Academic Workers to the editor of the San Francisco Chronicle, in response to an editorial, is as follows:
UC Academic Workers strike to protect tenured faculty
The UC Academic Workers’ strike was called after two regents overruled the recommendations of an external panel to cut tenured faculty members’ pensions. We supported the strike and held classes at various locations in and around the Bay Area and the Los Angeles County/Orange County area.
The Academic Workers believe that the UC system should be more accountable to its students, teachers, and workers and that the university has a responsibility to the students who put it in jeopardy. The Academic Workers also believe that if we can ensure the financial health of the entire UC system, we will be able to give back to our students and to our broader community.
We have not, since the strike began, received any support from the university. We have been informed that it has been a “struggle to find a solution.” UC has also refused to make any financial or staffing decisions based on our recommendations.
I am writing to urge you to show strong support for the University of California Academic Workers’ strike, to help us build support for our students and the broader UC community, and to make the university more accountable to its people.
As part of our strike, we have been supporting students. On Tuesday, Feb. 23, when we began preparing for the