Friday, September 25, 2009

The UC Walks Out To Protest Fee Hikes, Budget Cuts, Furloughs, and Loss of Shared Governance

This web site, ucstudentwalkout, makes a good point about the budget cuts:
These budget cuts are not inevitable. Rather than accepting the state legislature’s cuts to advance an agenda of privatization, the UC should be advocating on our behalf to re-prioritize public education in the state of California. There is a budget crisis, but there is also a crisis of priorities. If this 32% fee increase goes through it will mean a serious blow to the quality, accessibility, and diversity of the UC system. And it will open the door for further fee increases in the years to come, which will systematically price out California students from what was once the educational jewel of this state.
And this sign, found at UPTE's strike images gallery, makes the point even more concisely:

This site has no pictures but gives a breakdown of activities on all the UC campuses.

'Naked rally' at UC Davis sets stage for Thursday walkout, reads an article in the Sacramento Bee. Uh huh. I would have expected this from Santa Cruz, but the Aggies?

A large crowd but surprisingly few naked people at Santa Barbara, with an article here.
Here's a news story of the walkout at San Diego, with some more pictures at this news site.
This news story on the Santa Cruz protests makes the important point that the campus's Child Care Center is slated to be closed because of the cuts, making it even more difficult for faculty, staff and students to create a work-life balance. I'm sure that moving from subsidized to astronomical child care costs while simultaneously dealing with a pay cut or fee hike is going to be real easy. Not.
And, of course, at Santa Cruz they took over a building. Or as locals would call it, that's what's known as "a weekday."

This site has a short description of the rallies at UCLA. And the Daily Bruin has a news story with slideshow. I can't link directly to the slideshow but it has wonderful shots of the whole day, with audio overlaying it.

Zunguzungu has some great photos, along with an explanation of the location's importance as the origin of the Free Speech movement, and links to coverage by the main local news sites.

As the largest campus population, Berkeley naturally can pull out the most people. No fair writing news articles about how the walkout is a washout at Merced because it barely drew a hundred people. How many students, faculty and staff are there total? PS more good pics of Berkeley are at this indy news site. Huge crowds and great signs!


undine said...

Thanks for this post and these links.

Maude said...

what a great post! I mean for it's information, not because it's great the the UC school system has to go through this, but what a great rally of people across the state to fight for something so important. this is why I love California.

Thanks for the post and the links!!

Maude said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Maude said...

i accidentally posted the same comment twice, so that's what got deleted. sorry. :)

Unknown said...

Great post! But actually, one reason Berkeley was so much more supercharged is that we've been in session for weeks already. The other eight campuses all had to organize protest rallies on the first day of classes, which posed a substantial problem for organizers (they were coordinating the student protests with the faculty walkout scheduled for the first day of classes). My understanding is that the two were not originally the same, such that coordinating the protests to coincide with the faculty walkouts necessarily meant taking on some extra difficulties in organizing and logistics (making the numbers that did protest all the more remarkable).

That's no excuse for Merced though; they also started classes a month ago! ;)

Susan said...

Actually, I don't think Merced was as small as it was presented (from what my sources told me.) I don't know about the student numbers, but somewhere between 10 and 15% of the faculty participated. Many who didn't walk out did teach-ins in class to highlight the issues.