solidarity across unions

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

A Woman’s Place is in her Union. 

“Light and Truth at Yale University” March and Speakout on Women in the Academy Wednesday, December 10, 2003 On December 10, members of the Yale community—graduate students, undergraduates, faculty, locals 34 and 35—will join together in an action demonstrating that “A Woman’s Place is in her Union.” GESO will hold its membership meeting at the same time as Local 34 holds its membership meeting. Around 6:30pm, we will all march from College Street to the Women’s Table outside Sterling Memorial Library. Barbara Ehrenreich, award-winning columnist and author of Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America, a New York Times bestseller, will speak briefly on the serious issues women face in the academy. There is a long history of women activists who have fought to make Yale a better, more equitable institution. Lucille Dickess, the first President of local 34, fought for equal pay for equal work in the 1970s and 1980s, and continues to fight for a decent pension after three decades of working at Yale. She’s been known to say: “I was a mother and a wife, but I wasn’t a woman until I became a sister in the union.” Hazel Carby, the only black woman with tenure at Yale, explains how this administration uses junior faculty, particularly women and people of color, to establish the intellectual legitimacy of Yale as a diverse university with a diverse curriculum, but it refuses to value, nurture, or promote these scholars. These issues of fairness, equality, and diversity in our intellectual community will resonate with all members of the Yale community. By participating in this action, we will make visible how collective action can be anti-racist and feminist activism for everyone who is concerned about creating a fair and accessible academy. To review GESO's recent report on diversity, see
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The Coalition of Graduate Employee Unions is a loose-knit coalition of labor unions in the USA and Canada that represents graduate students employed as teachers, researchers, and administrative staff.