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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The Strike at Indiana University (UPDATED WITH SUPPORT PETITION)

By Anonymous

Students at Indiana University are striking on April 11-12th. The strike coincides with the meeting of the university’s Board of Trustees. Six of the nine members of the Board are appointed by the state’s governor.

Strikers’ concerns focus on tuition and fees; the privatization and outsourcing of services; and a wage policy that has severely affected the lowest paid members of the university. Twenty years ago, IU-Bloomington received about 50% of its funding from the state. Between 2008 and 2013, state spending per university student fell more than 17%, and total state funding for IU’s budget has hit a new low of 18%
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The most recent data suggests that the average IU student graduates with a debt of $28,434.

Strike demands also call on the university to honor its promise to double the enrollment of African-American students, as well as to support the abolition of HB1402 (which prevents undocumented students from receiving in-state tuition) and SB590 (an immigration law enforcement bill styled after Arizona’s SB1070.)

The strike has been organized by open assemblies. The emphasis is on laying the groundwork for a longer struggle to defend the public university.

Support staff currently work under a “no-strike clause.” Faculty were initially told they may be in violation of university policy in discussing the strike over email, but this suggestion was retracted after protests about academic freedom.  The administration insists that “faculty and staff have a duty to provide the classes and services” for which students attend.

UPDATE: The Nation has a petition in support of the Strikers.  You can find it here.

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