UCSB students meeting with chancellor after May Day protest

They want the full funding of the UC system

Yesterday around 100 UCSB students protested at Storke Tower advocating for the full funding of the UC system and labor rights.

As a result of the protest, they have arranged for a meeting with Chancellor Yang for 8:00am on Tuesday May 2.

According to UCSB Student – Worker Coalition, the organization that hosted the event, the purpose of the march was “to create a system of accountability with the administration in regards to both violations of labor rights and in the fight for the full funding of the UC.”

The Coalition feel it is necessary to band up with unions in order to “help the unions fight back against the UC administration as they try to eliminate double time pay, increase health care premiums, and give no foreseeable wage increases or cost of living adjustments. We are here for our unions and they are here to help us in the fight to eliminate tuition. Student-worker solidarity is the only way forward.”

Many activists feel that the recent actions taken by the UC System contribute to injustices to many of it’s students and workers, including food insecurity, housing insecurity, and workers rights.

According to the Coalition, “Currently 23 percent of students suffer from low food security and 19 percent from very low food security (combined 42 percent). Whereas 25 percent of UC employees suffer from low food security and 45 percent suffer from very low food security (combined 70 percent). The average across the state is 12.6 percent which means that the conditions surrounding the UC are creating poverty at a much higher rate than the rest of the state.”

May Day has a long history with activist movements and has been attributed to creating opportunities such as the eight hour work day, parental leave, child labor laws, pension plans, social security, overtime pay, vacations, weekends, and paid sick leave.

It originated from an event that occurred in Chicago on May 4, 1886, known as the Haymarket Affair.  A general strike for an eight hour work day began on May 1, 1886.  On May 4, the police were attempting to disperse the demonstrators when an individual in the crowd through a bomb, causing the Chicago Police to shoot into the crowd, killing four of the demonstrators.  Later the same day, the labor leaders and labor sympathizers were rounded up and executed.

Since the incident, May Day is a recognized annual event by many unions and activist groups.

According to UCSB Student – Worker Coalition, “May Day, or International Worker’s Day, is the day in which we join in solidarity with workers across the world. Ever since 2006, May Day has become a national day for immigrant rights. This upcoming May 1st we will gather at Storke Tower to not only follow in these traditions, but also to advance student-worker solidarity here at UCSB.”

Quotes from the UCSB Student – Worker Coalition were pulled from the May Day event page.

UC Santa Barbara