Spurned union plans to disrupt Yale's commencement ceremony
A graduate student union is planning to disrupt commencement proceedings at Yale next week.
According to The Yale Daily News, Local 33 and several other connected labor organizations are planning to protest Yale and Donald Trump at Yale’s commencement as a follow-up to a mock hunger strike in which participants swapped out when they became uncomfortable.
Bob Proto, the leader of the affiliated union Local 35, stated in an email to the Connecticut AFL-CIO that “we will flood the city of New Haven with working people, to show that nobody—not Donald Trump, not the Yale administration—will make us move backward now.”
A May 12 email from Jaime Myers-McPhail, a leader of “New Haven Rising,” states that the city “will become ground zero in the fight for workers under Trump.”
Local 33’s protest is reportedly in response to Yale’s refusal to meet with the graduate student union about negotiating a contract between the school and the union, but Yale asserts that it is still investigating the legality of the union vote with the National Labor Relations Board.
“Yale is trying to buy time until Trump appointees can void our votes and roll back our rights,” squawks a Facebook event for the protest, while a poster for the event calls for “union members and allies near and far” to join the protest and “demonstrate that we are done waiting.”
The flyer lacks specific details, however, and directs people in small print to contact an official Local 33 email for more information.
Tom Conroy, a spokesperson for Yale, told the Daily News, that the school is “aware of the scheduled demonstration and has made contingency plans to give the graduating students and their families and friends the celebratory day they deserve.”
Graduating students are reportedly upset about the agitators’ plans, yet remain generally supportive of the union.
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