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Hot Campaign Plans Heat Up Cold Vermont Days!
February 21, 2006

From February 16-18, Carl, Pedro, and I headed up to the University of Vermont for three days of workshops, planning, fun, and lots of hot drinks. UVM's Student Labor Action Project launched a "Livable Wages" campaign last fall, focusing mainly on foodservice workers on their campus that are contracted by Sodexho, but are demanding a living wage for all workers on their campus. A living wage policy has already been adopted by the city of Burlington, and it's about time that the university catch up! SLAP is also working closely with the Vermont Workers Center, and the Vermont Livable Wage Campaign. Students have already presented their list of demands to UVM President Fogel, and are publicly awaiting an answer by April 7 as to whether the university will adopt a living wage policy and ensure the freedom to organize on UVM's campus.

After a warm welcome Thursday night, a group of about 15 UVM students and I watched the Georgetown hunger strike documentary and then had a discussion, with lots of enthusiastic participation from all the folks there. After that (and the arrival of Pedro and Carl), UVM SLAP students spent the next two days creating a concrete strategy for this semester. They are very excited to strengthen relationships with workers, and continue to build on the intense pressure that began last semester, when over 300 students rallied outside of UVM board meeting in zero degree weather as nearly 100 invaded the meeting inside. If that's not commitment, I don't know what is!

This campaign is definitely moving quickly - stayed tuned for more exciting news on UVM's campaign this Spring!

In solidarity,


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