The students, faculty and staff at all levels of the California public educational system need your help. As you know, the last 30 years have seen an aggressive neo-liberal attack on both public institutions and the Left in general. Public education is not at a crossroads: we are already far along a path that threatens to put higher education for hundreds of thousands of working class students - a disproportionate number of whom are students of color - beyond reach. Additionally, our privatized university increasingly denies income to many thousands of TAs, lecturers, professors and student employees. Towards the end of last year, our collective action signaled forceful resistance to the increasing privatization of public education. Last year saw massive attempts to sway public opinion through pledges, petitions, phone banking, protests and the occupation of buildings - actions that will continue until we, workers and students, have a decisive role in determining the shape of the public institutions that were instituted for our benefit. What happens in California will not stay here; for this reason, we need your help.
We ask for your assistance in the struggle for the future of education in two ways: first, that you add your voices to ours through solidarity protests, op-eds, and letters decrying the tactics used against student protest. While particularly sharp in California, budget cuts are already affecting schools throughout the nation. The public needs to hear from a wide variety of people through a wide variety of media - you can help provide for this need. Second, we also really need funds for legal defense and remuneration for damages - many students on UC and CSU campuses are being made to pay restitution for damages, without evidence of their involvement, through guilt by demonstrations. 37 UCSC students alone are facing unsubstantiated fines of close to $35,000 for actions on November 17-20. The process whereby students are being singled out is arbitrary, secretive, and meant to divide students and workers against each other. We simply do not have the resources for the urgent task of defending each other. Your solidarity would be a tremendous aid to us.
Any help will go a long way towards mobilizing and strengthening a collective struggle. The strike committee of UCSC - consisting of members of undergrad, grad, and faculty groups - has set up a paypal account (firstname.lastname@example.org
: checks can be arranged by emailing us at that address, as well) for saving and distributing funds.
The students, staff and faculty of California
Barbara Epstein: Professor of History of Consciousness -- UCSC
Max Fox: Undergraduate Student, Linguistics -- UCSC
Carla Freccero: Professor of Literature -- UCSC
Johanna Isaacson: Lecturer --UCSC
Madeline McDonald Lane: Graduate Student, Literature -- UCSC
Brian Manford: Staff -- UCSC
Mark Paschal: Graduate Student, History of Consciousness -- UCSC
Olivia Warner: Undergraduate Student, Literature -- UCSC