Humble Contributions to the Peoples' History

April 5, 2012
Swarthmore College

The Struggle for a Living Wage and Workplace Justice at the University of Virginia

Cecilia Marquez ’11, PhD candidate in History at the University of Virginia and a key student leader in the struggle for a living wage for UVA employees, engaged students in an interactive discussion about the history and context of the campaign at UVA, strategies and tactics employed (including a historic hunger strike, which received widespread media attention), and the successes and shortcomings of the campaign thus far. She contextualized the struggle at UVA within a larger climate of living wage and union recognition campaigns happening at universities all over the country.

Cecilia covered specific topics in campus organizing, such as how to effectively organize with campus staff and foster student-staff solidarity, how to run an effective media campaign, how to make decisions about tactics in a campaign, and how to negotiate with college administrators.

For more information, check out the Living Wage at UVW webpage here. Swarthmore Labor Action Project (SLAP!), which monitors wages since the College implemented increases since the Swarthmore College living wage campaign in 2005, sponsored the event.

“Ain’t no power like the power of the people, ’cause the power of the people don’t stop. Say what?!?!” 

Thanks to Danielle Noble for written content.

Some pictures and video from the evening’s discussion.

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