Takeaway: Our union is returning to the streets as part of a broad alliance for a masked, safe #March4RLivesRJobsRSchools through downtown New Brunswick on September 26 at 3pm. We need your help. If you can participate, please sign this pledge to march today. Starting today, ask your colleagues, friends, and family to pledge to march. Help us get the word out; you can share this post from our Facebook page on social media.
Our union has been working with an alliance of other Rutgers unions, students, and community activists to organize a united action in New Brunswick that will send a message to the university administration and its government and corporate partners that #WeRNotDisposable.
We had a busy summer of organizing, confronting a management that chose layoffs and cuts over our people-centered approach to the pandemic and economic crisis. Now it’s time to step up our efforts and show that we are united with our coworkers, students, and the community in our determination to choose a different direction for Rutgers’ future.
The march will be safe, masked, and socially distanced, taking a route through downtown New Brunswick that will maximize visibility while also highlighting institutions that are actively harming the New Brunswick and Rutgers community. We hope all members will consider if they can participate in person in New Brunswick; if you can, please sign this pledge and tell us why you will be marching. If you can’t participate in person, please help us build this action. Ask your colleagues, friends, and family to pledge to march. We can use your help getting the word out on social media—you can share this post from our Facebook page.
As exciting as it will be to get back to marching this month, we’re just as inspired by the organizing work going into this action: It’s a living example of our people-centered alternative.
Among the broad alliance that helped to organize the march is our Coalition of Rutgers Unions. We have been working together to oppose the administration’s layoffs targeting the vulnerable, challenge its irresponsible reopening plans, and demand it honor the contracts it is trying to break by falsely declaring a “fiscal emergency.” We collaborated with student organizations like the Rutgers University Student Assembly, and their representatives played a leading role in formulating our demands, drafting our call to action, and planning the march.
The action allowed us to reaffirm our alliances with long-time social justice groups and community organizers in New Brunswick. The struggle to save Lincoln Annex middle school from the “development” plans of Rutgers and Robert Wood Johnson Hospital is at the heart of this march; we will gather in front of the school at 3pm. The success of the Lincoln Annex struggle depends on the support it gains from Rutgers workers and students, and our futures likewise depend on solidarity from the community. The old labor slogan on our banner is showing its importance once again: an injury to one is an injury to all.
So please pledge to march if you can—and spread the word.
Todd and Becky
Todd Wolfson, President, Rutgers AAUP-AFT
Rebecca Givan, Vice President, Rutgers AAUP-AFT
Rutgers AAUP-AFT Facebook page: https://facebook.com/RUaaup/
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Find the latest messages to members and union statements here.
Read how Rutgers AAUP-AFT is confronting the crisis here.