UPDATE: We are still here and not going anywhere. The university called in UCPD to shut down our peaceful protest, but we are now back in front of California Hall. Rally at 9am and 3:30pm.
Because of their crackdown and because they thus far failed to schedule a meeting with us now that Chancellor Birgeneau is back from vacation in Europe, we are requesting an official negotiation meeting (not another “dialogue”) with the Chancellor and other campus administrators today for 3:30pm. We now have 3 dry strikers (meaning they are no longer drinking water) and 10 solidarity strikers (with more on the way).
At our first meeting, it was mutually agreed that we needed clarification on our demands, including what it means to have an inclusive campus environment that can be a sanctuary to undocumented students and students of color. On Friday, Breslauer misinterpreted student organizers’ attempt to clarify our demands and said that we added demands to the table. In reality, with input from community and faculty, we suggested ways in which he could actually commit to the spaces that communities of color use. There have been no negotiations between student organizers and Breslauer and Birgeneau, but rather there has been less than good faith in the “discussions” we have had thus far. This letter is meant to clarify why we are asking for our demands and expose some of the unproductive excuses that Breslauer and Birgeneau have used to stall talks. We hope to enter constructive negotiation that can satisfy the hunger strikers, bring the hunger strike to an end, and make our campus more inclusive for our communities.