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LWAC explores the Lone Star State!
Jan 8, 2005

In early December, Jack and I spent a week in the large state of Texas with awesome folks at three schools: Texas A&M, Baylor and UT-Austin. The Texas A&M Living Wage Coalition had organized “Beat the Hell Outta Poverty” week and we were invited to run some workshops and teach-ins. They have a small but dedicated group of students, professors and community members. One of the highlights was the documentary that they made capturing the voices and stories of the workers on their campus (watch the film at New Spark Media). After a meeting with the president last spring, he implemented a one dollar raise for all workers, which was a good step but is still a long way from a living wage in College Station.

After College Station, Jack and I went up for an informal meeting with the students organizing a living wage campaign at Baylor University in Waco (check out their site). We talked about the Georgetown campaign and then got into some great discussions about strategy for their campaign. They organized a successful concert in the fall to raise awareness about the need for a living wage at Baylor and are planning more education events and actions for the spring.

The next morning we were off to the state capital, Austin. We were lucky to meet up with some of the veteran activists at UT-Austin who had been involved in various campaigns throughout the years and are now doing solidarity work with the transportation workers in the city. LWAC was also on the air on KVRX, a UT student and community radio station with some of the student activists we met. Overall being in Texas was amazing; I was really inspired by the folks organizing solidarity campaigns in one of the most anti-worker areas of the country.

- diane!

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