At the UC Santa Cruz rally, individuals spoke at Quarry Plaza, and a small group also worked on a decorating a large new banner that read "Education Not Exploitation." One undocumented student spoke about her experiences at UCSC, and several other students spoke about relatives who were undocumented and how it affected their education.
Michelle Glowa, a graduate student and one of UCSC's contract negotiators for UAW, spoke and began by highlighting the most recent victory for workers at the university.
Graduate Student Worker Michelle Glowa of UAW Local 2865 speaks
Graduate Student Workers have been without a contract since September, and in addition to attempting to negotiate with the university over wages and health care, they are fighting for the rights of undocumented graduate students.
"One of our biggest demands, that we will not settle a contract without making serious progress on, is the rights of undocumented graduate students," Glowa said.
She went on to explain how graduate students without documentation are asked to work without pay and that they are not able to work as Teaching Assistants, which is how most graduate students fund their education.
"When TA-ships are not accessible to graduate students without documentation, graduate school is not accessible because we have to be able to pay our way through school," she said.
Additionally, Glowa criticized Janet Napolitano for militarizing the UC Santa Cruz campus during the April 2-3 UAW strike where riot police were deployed. As a result, 22 students who were attempting to maintain a peaceful picket line were arrested. Glowa urged individuals to call campus provost Allison Galloway to demand all of the charges be dropped against the students, who are now known as the UCSC 22, before their arraignment on May 6 in Santa Cruz Superior Court.
Glowa concluded her remarks by emphasizing the need for students to say no to a, "racist, militarized university."
|Duncan, who is one of the UCSC 22, speaks|