Thursday, November 28, 2013

Workers and Students Shutdown UCSC during Statewide ULP Strike

Students and workers at UC Santa Cruz blocked both entrances and shut the campus down in support of a University of California-wide unfair labor practices strike on November 20, called for by AFSCME 3299. [Top video: compilation of clips from the blockade of the west entrance of UCSC and the march down to the main entrance of campus.]

According to a statement released by AFSCME 3299, the Unfair Labor Practices strike was called in response to a, "coordinated campaign of illegal intimidation, coercion, and threats," against UC Patient Care and Service Workers who participated in a walk out in May over unsafe staffing levels at UC supported hospitals.

Workers on all UC Campuses and Medical Centers statewide participated in the strike.

Workers represented by AFSCME include custodians, food service workers, cooks, bus drivers, licensed vocational nurses, nursing assistants, medical assistants, and techs.

Joining AFSCME on the picket line in Santa Cruz were members of UAW Local 2865, the union that represents student academic workers, as well as a variety of student groups, which included Autonomous Students UCSC and MEchA de UCSC.

Those living in on campus family housing were allowed to enter the university during the strike. Emergency vehicles were also allowed to enter, but unlike previous campus shutdowns, the police were prevented from driving through, and according to demonstrators were turned away at least once.

After a 12+ hour blockade in the rain, those blocking the west entrance marched down Empire Grade to the base of campus for a final rally.

Noontime rally at the base of campus

West Entrance

A motorcyclist attempts to get through

Another motorcyclist attempts to get through

Marching to the base of campus

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