UC Strikers Unfurl Massive Banner at Cal-UCLA Game Demanding a Living Wage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

25 November 2022

image cred: Diablo Rising Tide

 

BREAKING: UC STRIKERS UNFURL BANNER AT CAL-UCLA FOOTBALL GAME, ACADEMIC WORKERS CONTINUE TO DEMAND FAIR BARGAINING AND A STRONGER CONTRACT

Press contact: Britt Dawson (858) 699-1784 britdaws@gmail.com

Hi-res pictures available upon request.

Berkeley, CA– At the Cal–UCLA football game today, a group of striking UC Berkeley academic workers and allies scaled two flagpoles and raised a 30-foot banner calling on the University of California to stop unfair labor practices and to agree to pay their academic workers a living wage.

Dressed as referees, two climbers—fern Wildtruth, a UC Berkeley PhD student, and Christina Liu, a community ally—scaled two 40-foot-high flagpoles and unfurled a banner reading “Flag on the play: Unfair labor practice #fairUCnow #UAWonstrike.” The banner is calling attention to a strike—now in its 11thday—by 48,000 graduate student-workers and postdoctoral scholars affiliated with the United Auto Workers union. “UC needs to pay us enough to afford basic needs—like food, shelter, and child support,” says Britt Dawson, a striking graduate student-worker at UC Berkeley. “The typical salary for a graduate student instructor at UC is just $24,000—half of the living wage for a single adult in the counties where UC Berkeley and UCLA are based.[1] Many of our members have children, and many of them are rent- and food-insecure as the result of UC’s disregard for their workers’ basic needs.”

The strike—the largest ever in U.S. higher education history—has been called by the unions representing student and postdoctoral workers following 17 months of unsuccessful collective bargaining, during which UC consistently refused to pay crucial academic workers a living wage. During negotiations, UC has repeatedly violated U.S. labor law, and dozens of complaints for unfair labor practices have been filed against the administration. [2]

“Strikers aren’t asking for anything outrageous. Graduate student salaries are only about 1% of UC’s

image cred: @curtis_V0llmar

budget, but we do so much of the teaching and research at the University,” said fern Wildtruth, one of the two climbers and a striking PhD student at Berkeley. “We’re asking for a living wage in compensation because we need that to be able to focus on our work. I’m really distressed when I hear from my international peers how much of a barrier the $15,000 in extra tuition that they need to pay is. But one of the things that we’re trying to get included in our contract, and which it seems like U.C. is finally looking into, is public transit passes; we need to be re-structuring everything to make the collective behaviors that reduce global heating the default.”

The group of students and allies—who are not affiliated with the UAW union leadership—say that the strikers are ready to do what it takes to win, including striking into the spring if necessary. As the semester ends and final grades loom, it’s up to UC to start taking bargaining seriously if they want business as usual to continue on the ten UC campuses. High-resolution pictures upon request.

1) See the MIT Living Wage Calculator, created by Amy K. Glasmeier: https://urldefense.com/v3/__https://livingwage.mit.edu/counties/06001,https:/*livingwage.mit.edu/counties/06037__;Lw!!PxibshUo2Yr_Ta5B!xIYrtpEdeh0BU4TRt6bvUy-yOLJhp5kcvYVWa1MBTK80-V5tS0D1xDZGVeZrpBXQgEqJ4fIm5f2UE2zLiXVDDJ-QMsk$

2.) For a tracker of UC’s unfair labor practices, see: https://urldefense.com/v3/__https://www.fairucnow.org/ulp/__;!!PxibshUo2Yr_Ta5B!xIYrtpEdeh0BU4TRt6bvUy-yOLJhp5kcvYVWa1MBTK80-V5tS0D1xDZGVeZrpBXQgEqJ4fIm5f2UE2zLiXVDv14-aws$

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Nov. 1-4: Stop GTN Xpress Week of Actions

cross-posted from Wild Idaho Rising Tide

Media Advisory

October 30, 2022

Media contacts:

Helen Yost, Wild Idaho Rising Tide

wild.idaho.rising.tide@gmail.com, 208-301-8039

Maig Tinnin, Rogue Climate

maig@rogueclimate.org, 541-852-2496

 

Stop GTN Xpress Week of Actions

Regional organizations and grassroots activists of 350 Spokane, Extinction Rebellion Palouse, Idaho Chapter Sierra Club, Rogue Climate, Veterans for Peace Spokane Chapter 35, and Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) are co-hosting three early November protests of the Gas Transmission Northwest (GTN) Xpress pipeline expansion project.  These allied groups are publicly demonstrating in solidarity with frontline, indigenous, Wet’suwet’en protectors of their sovereignty and unceded territories from Coastal GasLink pipeline construction in British Columbia.  The Canadian fossil fuels parent company of GTN, TC Energy (formerly TransCanada), notoriously owns Coastal GasLink and the incomplete Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.

As an essential part of its application to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), GTN must disclose pre-arranged, binding, precedent agreements with natural gas utilities, to demonstrate economic need and public interest in the project.  Cascade Natural Gas, headquartered in Kennewick, Washington, has reserved an extra 20 million cubic feet per day of GTN Xpress gas, for delivery to Oregon and Washington customers.  Intermountain Gas based in Boise, Idaho, has agreed to accept 79 million cubic feet of gas per day, more than half of GTN Xpress gas capacity.  Only passing through the sparsely populated north Idaho panhandle, GTN Xpress gas for southern Idaho would displace some Williams Northwest pipeline gas across the Snake River Plain utility service area.

A growing Northwest movement and emerging coalition are planning peaceful, effective citizen pickets on nearby walkways outside fossil fuels corporate offices, to confront the perpetrators of the Coastal GasLink and GTN Xpress gas pipelines and attract a broad range of public involvement.  Volunteer organizers encourage participants and supporters of these lively demonstrations to bring friends, families, signs, banners, and props, and share this event announcement and flyer and other issue outreach materials.

  • Tuesday, November 1, 4 pm PDT at TC Energy, 201 West North River Drive, Suite 505, Spokane, Washington: Meet on the north path along the Spokane River
  • Wednesday, November 2, 4 pm PDT at Cascade Natural Gas, 8113 West Grandridge Boulevard, Kennewick, Washington: Gather on the south sidewalk
  • Friday, November 4, 4 pm MDT at Intermountain Gas, 555 South Cole Road, Boise, Idaho: Converge on the west walkway near the Farmers Lateral Canal

Issue Background

Attempting to foist stranded “natural” gas assets on unwitting citizens and utility ratepayers, TC Energy has stealthily secured approval by government regulatory agencies for increasing volumes in a dozen other pipelines, instead of building new, more controversial infrastructure.  GTN has applied to FERC for a required certificate of public convenience and necessity for GTN Xpress, to upgrade the capacity of three compressor stations and move an additional 150 million cubic feet per day of methane gas along its 1,354-mile pipeline from British Columbia, through north Idaho, eastern Washington, and central Oregon, to southern Idaho and California.  The 61-year-old, potentially explosive, fracked gas pipeline is dangerously located under the Spokane, Washington, area and below Sandpoint, Idaho and a nearby Schweitzer ski resort parking lot.  The Athol, Idaho, pump station proposed for expansion stands only two miles from the popular visitor destination and precarious rides of Silverwood Theme Park.

As another industrial corridor for increasing corporate profits and imposing risks with few benefits on neighboring communities, GTN Xpress would extend fossil fuels extraction and industry and government violence toward First Nations people and their lands and waters around the pipeline origin, and would dismiss the public input process rights and jeopardize the health and safety of directly affected, rural and tribal residents close to the pipeline route and compressor stations, with higher exposure to volatile and cancer-causing emissions and hazardous gas leaks, explosions, and accidents.  With current GTN pipeline volumes already double the market demand that is rapidly decreasing, while renewable energy costs decline, GTN Xpress would boost Northwest gas consumption, burden utility ratepayers with expensively investing in prolonged fossil fuels infrastructure, and disproportionately impact low-income communities with worse respiratory diseases.  This boondoggle would increase the greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change by 3.25 million-plus metric tons per year (up 16 percent in Idaho, 7.7 percent in Oregon, and 3.8 percent in Washington) and exacerbate the extreme droughts, wildfires, storms, floods, and global air, water, and climate pollution attributed to fossil fuels.

During its comment period on the GTN Xpress draft environmental impact statement (EIS) that closed on August 22, FERC received over 1,300 oppositional petition signatures and extensive remarks from concerned citizens, climate and environmental groups, and tribal, state, and federal government officials, denouncing deficient climate effects analysis, inadequate evidence of economic need, and the pipeline expansion’s significant contributions to worsening climate change, while the Northwest transitions off outmoded, destructive fossil fuels toward more sustainable, renewable energy sources.

The attorneys general of Washington, Oregon, and California filed joint comments calling on FERC to deny a GTN Xpress permit and motioning to intervene in the FERC case.  They raised concerns that the pipeline expansion would force more fossil fuels on West Coast state residents for at least another 30 years, violate state policy commitments to reduce climate-polluting emissions by 80 to 95 percent by 2050, and make these ambitious but crucial targets more difficult to achieve.  In more recent comments to FERC, Idaho senators, congressmen, and the governor disputed the legal basis of the West Coast state attorneys general arguments.  The commission still has not granted, and GTN has motioned against, the case involvement of these attorneys general.  With postponed release of a final EIS anticipated on November 18 and a conclusive FERC decision on GTN Xpress expected in February 2023, Northwest communities are acting swiftly to halt this proposal and oppose any new or expanded fossil fuels extraction, transportation, and infrastructure projects.

 

For further information, visit the WIRT website and facebook pages describing GTN Xpress impacts and updates and pipeline resistance opportunities:

https://wildidahorisingtide.org/2022/10/24/stop-gtn-xpress-week-of-actions

https://www.facebook.com/events/663511032030167

Stop Camp Grayling Protesters Hang Banner, Light Fireworks at DNR Director’s Home.”

cross-posted from Stop Camp Grayling

For immediate release:

Stop Camp Grayling Protesters Hang Banner, Light Fireworks at DNR Director’s Home.

Forest defenders descend on DNR director Dan Eichenger’s home to demand he reject the land-use agreement with the Michigan National Guard… (and) call on the DNR to return the land to its rightful stewards: the Ojibwa, Odawa, and Potawatomi peoples.

’We know the military exists to bring pain and misery to our relatives and our earth,’ said a group member. ‘The war machine must be stopped, and our targets have names and addresses. ’We will be back.’

Full release:

NorCal: Urgent Call for Statewide Support for Threatened Coastal Forests & Tribal Sovereignty

cross-posted from Save Jackson Forest

Urgent Call for Statewide Support for Threatened Coastal Forests & Tribal Sovereignty

Please join The Coalition to Save Jackson at a  “30×30” Kick Off Rally on September 28th, 2022! The rally begins at 11 am, outside of the California Natural Resources Agency’s 30×30 Kick Off Event at 715 P St, Sacramento, CA 95814.

Our Coalition is supporting the Coyote Valley Band of Pomo Indians as they negotiate co-management of the Jackson Demonstration State Forest (JDSF) in their Pomo homelands. Establishing co-management and ending commercial logging in Jackson, the largest state-owned forest, are necessary if California is to enact the goals of reconciliation with Tribal people and reach its 30×30 goal of preserving lands to slow climate change. Governor Newsom established the 30×30 goal of protecting 30% of the state’s lands and waters by 2030. Scientists have advocated a similar global goal, in the face of accelerating climate change and declines in global biodiversity.

Supporting this campaign has statewide impacts because the Coyote Valley Band of Pomo Indians is negotiating with the State based on Governor Newsom’s little-publicized directive to state agencies to co-manage lands with the Tribes of California. What happens in Pomo Homelands can affect Tribal co-management in all of California. Please join us!

Tribal Chairman Michael Hunter said “For co-management to succeed, it must be a government to government relationship that creates equal decision making powers. I worry that the State does not understand the importance of the words they are using. We must ensure that co-management creates an equal relationship between the State and the Tribes with equal decision making authority.” At the rally we are going to amplify Tribal Elder Priscilla Hunter’s call for “No More Broken Promises” because, after halting logging, road building, and pesticide operations for seven months during negotiations with the Tribe, CalFire and CNRA are attempting to resume these operations before negotiations with the Tribe are complete.

The Tribe and Coalition protest that the State is desecrating Pomo and Coast Yuki Sacred Sites and cultural resources with their logging operations in JDSF. Furthermore, the State is squandering one of its best tools for fighting climate change by logging mature coast redwoods. “Redwood forests have amazing climate mitigation potential and management needs to maximize that potential,” said Sara Rose, a youth activist with Mendocino County Youth for Climate and member of the Coalition. “My generation will have to live with what the planet becomes if we don’t save it. We have to face the reality of climate change.”

Please join us in Sacramento, please share this call for support, and please send us your organization’s  logo if you support the Coyote Valley Band of Pomo Indians and the Coalition to Save Jackson in this campaign. If your organization can write a letter supporting our campaign, thank you. Please click here to sign a petition to shame CAL FIRE’s deception and protest logging in Jackson Demonstration State Forest! For more on this campaign read this background info, check out Savejackson.org, follow @savejacksoncoalition on Instagram, and like Coalition to Save Jackson The People’s Forest on Facebook!

Logos, questions and RSVPs can be emailed to Showing Up for Racial Justice Mendo Coast chapter, a member of the Coalition to Save Jackson: surjmendocoast@gmail.com

You can register for the State’s 30×30 event for free here if you would like to go inside the event and make your presence known.  Our rally will be outside the event.