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CUNY Faculty Statement of Support for #M1GS

Posted 12 years ago on April 26, 2012, 8:41 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt

1t day
Thousands of students and allies gather 2 days ago in NYC for 1T Day

via We Occupy CUNY:

We the faculty of the City University of New York (CUNY) express our solidarity with the May Day General Strike and the efforts to create a Free University in Madison Square Park on May 1, 2012. We further support a CUNY-Wide Day of Action on May 2, 2012 to build further momentum for social equality, show the collective power of CUNY faculty, students, and staff, and demonstrate our ability to transform the City University of New York into a university that is accessible, accountable, democratic, and free for all.

We are proud of CUNY's heritage as the successor to the Free Academy of the City of New York and the historic legacy of CUNY educators committed to building a truly public university free of cost for all New Yorkers. Therefore, we stand against anything that makes CUNY less accessible, less public, less safe, and less affordable.

We oppose the continuously increasing burden of tuitions and fees. We oppose the modeling of CUNY on corporate structures — from excessive executive compensation to the exploitation of contracted and adjunct labor. Increasing tuition costs and the growing debt burden foisted upon students undermine not only CUNY’s institutional goals, but also its legitimacy and the very futures of its students.

We oppose the undermining of local faculty and student governance at CUNY colleges through the imposition of a centralized curriculum. The jettisoning of foreign languages, science lab work, and the devaluation of the creative arts goes against all principles of general liberal arts education. The Pathways program, standardized to the “lowest common denominator” will further devalue the quality of a CUNY education, making it easier for students to transfer within CUNY but harder for their credits to be recognized outside CUNY.

We oppose the intensification of policing inside of CUNY, and protest NYPD and CUNY security surveillance and harassment of student organizations, political activity, and Muslim students.

We condemn police violence and arrests in response to peaceful on-campus protests by dissenting students and faculty, such as those well-documented on November 21st, 2011, and call for all charges to be dropped against those arrested on this date.

We support movements to create alternatives to these inequalities and the austerity and policing measures taken in response to this crisis, such as the Occupy movement, the struggle against securitization and racial profiling, and the movement of CUNY students, educators, and workers.

We support academic freedom and the right to exercise free speech through dissent and peaceful protest.

We support community control and self-determination in our education.

We support meaningful academic employment which allows all faculty, permanent and adjunct, to do good work in our classrooms and provides students with safe, meaningful learning environments.

We support CUNY students and faculty members, both permanent and adjunct, participating in May Day events and the Free University, and we encourage all to contribute.

The May Day General Strike, the Free University in Madison Square Park, and CUNY-Wide Day of Action are public endeavors to make education accessible to all and relevant to the struggles and challenges faced by New York's 99%. As all those who have struggled to make CUNY a truly public university have shown us, we must take deliberate steps to build the university that we want and need.

(see here for the full list of endorsements)


Episcopal Church Joins Chrous of Support for May Day

Posted 12 years ago on April 26, 2012, 8:34 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt

Episcopal Solidarity
Episcopal Bishop rallies with OWS, December 17th, 2011

via the Episcopal News Service (Occupy movement prepares for May 1; Episcopalians continue support):

With the dismantling of encampments at New York’s Zuccotti Park and elsewhere and the onset of winter, the Occupy movement dropped out of front-page headlines. But the movement against greed and economic inequality has continued unabated, supported by members of the faith community.

“It’s alive and well. I’ve never seen so much percolation going on. Just today there are four different meetings having to do with five different actions,” retired Episcopal Bishop George Packard said in a March interview with ENS. “Actions” – from street theater to interruptions of foreclosure procedures by singing protestors to weekly Wall Street marches – occur frequently, chronicled on Occupy Wall Street’s Facebook page, website and elsewhere. Earth Day on Sunday in New York, for example, will bring a “jazz funeral for the death of Earth as we know it” and a march to the site of the proposed Spectra Pipeline in the West Village.

Faith groups in some cities led Lent or Easter events. In late March, two priests from the Episcopal Diocese of Long Island and the founder of Protest Chaplains in Boston traveled to Oakland, California, to participate in a national Occupy Faith gathering. And movement supporters around the country are planning a day of action, including a call for a general strike, for May 1.

“May Day is really going to kick off a whole series of actions that are going to go on this summer,” said the Rev. John Merz, priest-in-charge at the Episcopal Church of the Ascension on Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Leading up to that, every Friday or Saturday brings a march around Wall Street, he said. “There are sleeping bags in front of the [New York] Stock Exchange. There may even be attempts at various reoccupations, whether it’s Zuccotti or elsewhere. That may happen on a mass scale.”

May 1, he explained, is “traditionally a day when unions and disparate groups work together to stand up for workers’ rights and the rights of the disadvantaged in society.”

click here for the full article


Indignados Join Calls for Global Solidarity on May Day

Posted 12 years ago on April 26, 2012, 8:16 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt

acampada barcelona
Acampada Barcelona, May 27 2011

via Acampada Barcelona International (also available in Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, German, French, and Turkish):

1st of May: General assemblies of workers!

The 1st of May is International Workers’ Day. In many of the world’s cities millions of us will gather to demonstrate in defence of our rights. For thirty years now, the deconstruction of the welfare state has been underway. Each successive government has worked hand in glove with the financial markets, submitted to their will – and likewise bent us to their will. We are subjected to growing inequality, to the fear of dismissal, to the policy of maximising profits, to stress. We are egged on to compete against each other and instructed to tighten our belts. Workforces are reduced, work loses its meaning, production is offshored, jobs become more and more insecure, unemployment becomes the norm. Each day more people’s livelihoods become insecure, more workers are tormented by their jobs and occasionally even succumb to them. Our freedoms and rights are progressively encroached on, including the most crucial one: that of deciding collectively how we shall live. We no longer live in democratic societies. This predicament arises in many different countries.

Confronted by such a challenge, social movements and citizens’ initiatives have arisen and grown in various parts of the world. Citizens have gathered to organise themselves and rekindle hope. During the last few months several general strikes have broken out in Europe. International networks today summon the population to a worldwide day of protest on 15 May. They likewise call on the people to gather on 1 May in general workers’ assemblies. The same day a general strike will take place in the United States.

Organise yourselves as part of this worldwide mobilisation! Let us draw on our strength, namely that of being the majority that organises itself and mobilises. Victory is won on the streets!