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Scholars for Social Justice

Interview with Gillian Mason, conducted by Jennifer Berkshire, newsletter editor

FALL 13

Tell us about Scholars for Social Justice—what does the group do?

Scholars for Social Justice is a group of academics who are invested in social justice and are interested in fighting corporatization both inside and outside of the university. We’ve currently got just over 300 members and they come from all over the state from Amherst to Boston. We try to amplify their voices and connect them to opportunities for activism on issues that matter most to them.

Letter from the President

SPRING 13

Dear Colleagues:

Welcome to the 8th issue of Union News.  We’re covering some interesting and important stories: the Governor’s higher education budget and the recent Advocacy Day at the statehouse, the new 2:2 teaching schedule, proposed changes to retiree health insurance, the importance of the family leave policy for both tenure-track and non-tenure-track faculty, a teachers strike in Haiti, and more.

Public Higher Education Advocacy Day

By Lorenzo Nencioli, Membership Coordinator, UMass Faculty Staff Union

SPRING 13

On Tuesday, March 5th, hundreds of students, faculty, and staff from around the state, including a large contingent from UMass Boston, gathered at the State House for the Public Higher Education Advocacy Day. Their goal was simple: tell their legislators to support Governor Patrick’s proposal to increase public higher education spending by $152 million in 2014.

The Haitian Teachers Strike: Fighting Back in a Time of Cholera

By Al Leisinger, Mathematics, NTT Grievance Officer

SPRING 13

In November, more than 25,000 people demonstrated across Haiti as part of a national teachers strike. Demands of the strike included:

• A minimum salary for teachers and the payment of all back salary due to teachers

• An increase in the number of public schools throughout the country so that all Haitian children can go to school free of charge

• A vaccination campaign against cholera to be conducted in every school and university in order to eradicate cholera from Haiti

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