(Opinion) On Monday morning, I marched in the streets of New Haven with thousands of members of my union and our allies, calling for Yale to begin contract negotiations. Then I put my cap and gown on over my orange union t-shirt, and went to receive my PhD.
While news headlines focus on the pitched struggle to resolve our fiscal crisis in Hartford, there is another important clash over the character of Connecticut taking place along the shoreline, at Yale University in New Haven.
(Opinion) After reading the article from one of my mayoral opponents, Marcus Paca, although I respect him I must disagree with him on several points concerning the health and data breach within the city of New Haven.
(Opinion) Just last month an Italian journalist — who was illegally detained — was released from a Turkish prison after a six-day hunger strike, nine nurses in the Mexican state of Chiapas — who were drawing attention to shortages of supplies and demanded the payment of wages and retirement payments — ended a 10-day hunger strike, hundreds of Palestinian prisoners declared an indefinite hunger strike in Israel, and eight Yale graduate students declared an indefinite fast.
The rationale behind the latter hunger strike does not compare by any standard to any hunger strike known to me, it is a distasteful show of self-righteousness masked as a selfless sacrifice of eight martyrs for the apparent greater good of graduate students in eight departments.
This alternative hunger strike might come across as comical at first, but it is not, it makes a mockery of a “path that many others have [traveled before],” to quote Aaron Greenberg.
(Opinion) Over the past two weeks, this paper has reported on a data breach in which hundreds of residents’ confidential medical records were compromised. These residents put their faith and trust in our city government in seeking services and treatment. However, the City of New Haven failed them and continues to fail them and all other city residents by not openly and publicly addressing the controversy from the top. While Harp Administration officials have remained silent, federal and state legal agencies have opened investigations regarding whether the city failed to comply with federal and state guidelines for response to data breaches. When/if wrongdoing is found, taxpayers will be on the hook for millions of dollars in potential civil liability.
(Opinion) The 20th anniversary tour of Rent, which played at the Shubert Theatre from Friday to Sunday, showed that — against a lot of odds — the 1997 musical about struggling artists in a vanished New York City still has legs.
Eight members of UNITE HERE Local 33, the new union representing some graduate student teachers at Yale, announced Tuesday that they have launched a hunger strike to try to convince the university to negotiate a first contract. One of the eight, union Chair Aaron Greenberg (who’s also a Wooster Square alder), offers his reasons in the following article. Click here and here for background on both sides of the dispute.
(Opinion) On Thursday, approximately 300 Yale graduate students, teaching fellows in nine departments across campus, will vote on whether Local 33, a union affiliated with UNITE HERE, will represent them in contract negotiations with the University. I am not eligible to vote, because although I am pursuing a Ph.D. in the Physics department, one of the departments whose teachers are eligible to vote, I am not currently teaching in Physics. However, if I could vote, I would be voting “no” on Local 33.
(Opinion) Before coming to Yale in 2014, I hadn’t interacted with a union. Alabama is a right-to-work state, and graduates from my public high school who work at the Mercedes plant didn’t have a union until well after I moved north. So when an organizer with Local 33 — then GESO — came talking graduate student union, I was skeptical. In the three years since, including two years spent organizing friends and colleagues in the History Department, I’ve come to see the promise of forming a union to make Yale a better place for graduate teachers and workers across New Haven.