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Minutes from the May Day People’s Assembly

If you couldn’t attend Monday’s May Day People’s Assembly, which continued the planning for GC actions around May Day, you can see the minutes from the meeting here.

The Solidarity Committee also produced the flyers below–please share them widely to help get the word out.

More info to come as the day’s events become more concrete!

May Day Planning and Action

Trump has been President for two months and the attacks have already begun: the Muslim Ban, the border wall, the Dakota Access Pipeline, etc. CUNY and all of public education will be under attack under Betsy DeVos. As students, adjuncts, professors, and CUNY workers we must give a unified response to these attacks–we must fight back.

Join the PSC GC Solidarity Committee on March 20 from 6:30-8:00pm in room 5414 to build for May 1st. This planning meeting will discuss departmental outreach, lessons learned from the Strike Authorization Vote, a speaker series for political education, and other ideas to prepare for the first May Day under a Trump administration. We will also discuss the possibility of department stoppages and a CUNY-wide shut down on May 1 in resistance to Trump.

See you there!

Check back for updates on future May Day Planning and day-of events and RSVP on Facebook.

Upcoming from the Solidarity Committee

Several events to be aware of:

 

1) Come march with the GC PSC contingent for the March for Education Justice this Saturday, March 4! We will be meeting at 9:00am at the fountain in Columbus Circle (more here).

We march for fully resourced public education, starting with early childcare and including higher education.

 

2)  Join us on Wednesday, March 8 for the International Women’s Day of Action. Wear RED!

10:00am-12:00pm: Sign making in the GC cafeteria

12:30pm-1:30pm: Rally on the front steps of the Graduate Center (Please let us know if you would like to speak!)

4:00pm-8:00pm: Rally in Washington Square Park

We fight for an end to gender violence, especially towards working women, trans women, and women of color. Reproductive justice, labor rights, and environmental justice for all. Full social provisioning. An anti-racist, anti-imperialist, all-inclusive feminism. 

 

3) Save the Date: Join us March 20 from 6:30pm-8:00pm at the GC to build for May 1st. This planning meeting will discuss departmental outreach, lessons learned from the Strike Authorization Vote, a speaker series for political education, and other ideas to prepare for the first May Day under a Trump administration. 

 

International Women’s Strike – Dialogue Session and Rally

Dialogue and Arts Session for Women’s Day of Action

Friday, February 24, 12:30-2:30pm, Room 5414; for more information email Travis.

Food and art supplies provided

To prepare for the Graduate Center community joining the March 8 International Women’s Strike/Day of Action, our GC PSC Solidarity Committee will host a dialogue and signs- / banner-making session.

  • 12:30-1:30pm: Discuss short readings about how women and allies can enhance the movement against Trump with bolder actions like the March 8 International Women’s Strike, and by centering those most endangered under his regime: women of color, LGBTQ women, immigrant women, Muslim women, and working-class women. Connect this to how women are underhired, underpaid, underpromoted, and mistreated at the Graduate Center and across CUNY — especially as adjuncts — which should be a major concern for our union.
  • 1:30-2:30pm: Create posters and a banner for the GC PSC contingent to use at the March 8 event

You can also find this event on Facebook.

 

March 8 International Women’s Strike: A Day Without A Woman

Wednesday, March 8, 12:30-1:30pm: rally for women’s work on the GC steps

NYC gathering time / location: TBA

For more information email Travis.

After the January 21 Women’s March amassed 1.2 million people in Washington D.C. and 673 sister protests around the globe (in total almost 5 million people), organizers now call on women and allies to strike on March 8 – International Women’s Day. Dubbed “A Day Without Women,” in reference to the massive 2006 “A Day Without Immigrants” May Day marches, protests will occur across the world, including New York City.

The Graduate Center community, in coordination with the GC PSC Solidarity Committee, will honor this call by holding a rally for women’s work on the Graduate Center steps, and then joining the NYC afternoon march as a campus contingent. We welcome you all to take collective action with us on this historic date.

 

Articles:

Beyond Lean-In: For a Feminism of the 99% and a Militant International Strike on March 8

Throw Sand in the Gears of Everything

Women’s March organisers plan a ‘day without women’ strike

Get Involved!

There are five committees that have been formed which any chapter member can join: the Adjunct Organizing Committee, the Contract and Grievance Committee, the Internal Organizing and Steward Committee, Legislative and Elections Committee, the Solidarity Committee. You can find brief descriptions of each of them here. Please reach out the the point person associated with each committee if you’d like to get involved!

CFA Event with Jonathan Karpf: Follow-Up

Dear PSC Members –

On September 22-23, 2016, the Graduate Center chapter of the PSC along with six other PSC chapters (Bronx Community College, LaGuardia College, City College, Brooklyn College, and College of Staten Island), the First Fridays Committee and the Adjunct Project, organized a public meeting and workshop series entitled “Contingent Labor in a Time of Austerity.” We invited an adjunct organizer from the California Faculty Association, Jonathan Karpf, to speak on how the California Faculty Association won contractual language for pay parity and job security for lecturers (the CSU designation for all non-tenure track faculty) in the California State University system.

At the public meeting, Jonathan described how the CFA mobilized mass demonstrations to coincide with collective bargaining, which brought together lecturers, tenure-line faculty, and students to flex the muscles of organized labor in the CSU system. Lecturers built solidarity with tenure-line faculty through an “inside/outside strategy:” lecturers first organized themselves, then gained the respect of tenure-line faculty by serving in indispensable roles such as leading informational workshops on the contract and union pension plan. Jonathan highlighted the importance of working with students to ensure that administrators do not attempt to divide and conquer by pitting student tuitions against faculty pay. In fact, CFA employs two full-time staff organizers who oversee a robust student internship program. Many students who participated in this program have gone on to become labor organizers. Furthermore, the full-time staffers have given much-needed material support to ongoing adjunct organizing efforts. CFA also found it effective to focus on adjunct job security as the basis upon which other demands for parity and equity could be made. Jonathan’s talk led to a lively discussion, and we could feel a sense of forward momentum in the room.

The workshops were a natural outgrowth of the insights we gained from the CFA struggle, adapted for the CUNY and New York City-specific context. The activists who attended these workshops shared their ideas for building adjunct power in the CUNY system, which we documented in a list of priorities and strategies that to help center our work for the coming years. The workshops also facilitated cross-campus coordination by bringing in leaders from the different colleges into face-to-face contact to discuss current strategies and collectively craft plans for future work. The strategies document created at the workshops accompanies this report, along with Jonathan’s Powerpoint presentation, which highlights the timeline of the CFA struggle, the tactics they employed, and the contract that they won out of their struggle for adjunct parity and job security. We hope union members and our allies will find these resources useful for adjunct-oriented organizing on CUNY campuses and beyond.

Anh Tran

Graduate Center PSC Adjunct Organizing Committee

Travis Sweatte

Graduate Center PSC Solidarity Committee

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