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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: Santa Cruz Indymedia | Education & Student Activism | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism | Labor & Workers View other events for the week of 5/ 1/2017
Are you participating in the May First march in Santa Cruz/ elsewhere? Please read below. Organizers have drafted a letter you can send to your employee(s)/faculty:
An injury to one is an injury to all!
Dear (your boss’s name),
I am writing to inform you that in honor of all workers in the world, I will not be working on Monday, May 1st as part of the International Worker’s Day.
Our bodies are spaces of politics, and hence I urge you all to consider giving the day off to your employees and encourage them to participate in a student-led march that is going to take place on May 1st.
I stand in solidarity with workers around the globe because I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired of economic and social injustice worldwide. Currently, at ‘our’ university, UCSC Chancellor George Blumenthal’s salary is over $380,000 (note: he is the lowest-paid UC Chancellor). Meanwhile, more than two-thirds of UC’s clerical, administrative and support staff struggle to put enough food on their own tables. To illustrate some disparities, a UCSC Cook makes an hourly wage of $17.88, a Senior Custodian makes $19.57, and students who can receive work-study and work at a dining hall acquire an hourly wage of $10.50. Blumenthal is a prime example of the many compliant apparatuses who maintain and legitimize capitalism as the most crucial value within the economic, political and cultural sectors of the university, the country and North American society. Not only are UCSC wages insufficient to live dignified lives, but the idea of giving our physical labor in return for money is the most dehumanizing activity one can do in this world, and yet we all conform to it.
On May First, I will use my body as a space of politics and as a form of agency to deliver a message: I am not the only angry student/worker in this campus. We are many. We condemn capitalism, patriarchy, imperialism and other forms of oppression domestic and worldwide.
In the current political context, you and I cannot remain neutral. We must be critical of our job titles, responsibilities and accountability dynamics. We are being sucked into bureaucratic processes, and will ultimately become uncreative, complicit, and passive adults our capitalist society yearns for. Unless we take action, we will remain immobile bodies thinking we can liberate ourselves by critiquing the system while at the same time adhering to oppressive jobs, bureaucracies and institutions. As cliché as it may sound, if you stay neutral in moments of oppression you have chosen the side of the oppressor.
Here are some things you can do on May 1st:
- Send a letter to all your employees letting them know they are not required to work on May First
- On the letter, encourage them to partake in the on-campus student demonstrations
- Send a letter to your employer letting them know you will stand in solidarity with workers worldwide and therefore cannot work on that day
- Participate in the student-led demonstrations
We do it for the undocumented and poor/low-income workers who wish to be part of the actions, but are afraid of getting arrested and consequently deported.