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Reports from around California (and the world) - The UC Walkout
by josh
Friday Sep 25th, 2009 4:58 AM
On Thursday, September 24, 2009, protests shook all 10 campuses of the University of California. Prompted by a walk-out letter signed by over 1,200 faculty, and a strike by 12,000 union researchers, students and labor allies organized a massive day of action to re-prioritize the budget of the UC system and push back against privatization. UC Berkeley, in particular, saw thousands attend rallies and marches reminiscent of previous generations, while activists at 3 other UCs occupied campus buildings (one of which is still ongoing). Politicians all over the state were forced to respond, with UC admins blaming state legislators and vis-versa. Schwarzenegger dismissed the protesters as a "screaming special interest group," while Gavin Newsom insinuated his support of the walkout, injecting the UC crisis into the 2010 Governor's race. Seeing how this was the very first day of class for most UCs, it looks to be a very long school year.. especially if you're on the wrong side of the bullhorn.

Here's a collection up of some of the reports from today. There's many more - please feel free to comment.
UC Wide
background info:

* Huge rally. Police estimate 5,000. March through streets of Berkeley, sit-down civil disobedience in front of campus, shutting down three main streets.
* All day picketing
* Over a half-dozen teach-ins (see titles:

* All day picketing
* Teamsters electricians and others honored the strike and went home
* Rally/March with estimates from several hundred to over a thousand + bikes w/ sound systems
* Brief occupation of admin building,0,6713606.story

* Faculty-Student Improv Show
* Rally (w/ estimates between 500 and 1000) outside admin building

* Noon Rally (LA Times estimate 700 people)
* March to Chancellor's office
* Occupation of Chancellor's office results in forcing Chancellor to set a meeting.,0,3895472.story

* City buses (UTU), UPS (Teamsters) and construction crews refused to cross picket lines.
* All Day Picketing
* Noon Rally with 300+ people
* 3:30pm second rally and march
* Ongoing occupation of building in the center of campus, with rally outside and

* All day picketing, joined by UNITE-HERE Local 30 members who've been boycotting the Manchester Grand Hyatt over similar issues.
* Rally w/ about 350 attendees

* All day picketing
* Rally w/ about ~75 people

Rally with ~400 people

Rally (w/ widely ranging estimates – from 150 to 500 to 1000) followed by a teach-in.

A small rally, but notable since Merced is the newest and smallest UC!

UPTE Strike/Picketing/Protest

UC Education abroad students assembled and took a group picture.
“The words we are holding up say, "Protect the UC, prevent fee increases" in traditional Chinese characters. We took the picture at the front gate of National Taiwan University, where we are all studying and have students from all the UC campuses except for San Francisco and Merced (we even have a student from CSU East Bay and a student from SF State).”


Rally w/ ~100 people against cuts and costs in the UA system, staged on 9/24 in solidarity w/ UC.

~75 students held a rally against cuts, costs, and the elimination of hundreds of classes in the Cal State system, and in solidarity w/ UC.

SF City College:
Rally against budget cuts and in solidarity with other educational institutions.

Members of Michigan GEO, AFT Local #3550 took a group picture, with signs in solidarity.


“Walkout, Rally Hailed as Rebirth of UC Activism” (as if it ever died – Front Page story from the Berkeley Daily Planet)

“I’ve been here since 1972, and I’ve never seen anything like it.” - George Lakoff

“For most of UC, today was THE FIRST DAY OF CLASSES, so there was essentially no time to organize. That makes #UCwalkout even more amazing.” - @studentactivism

“Faculty, students and unions from the University of California's 10 campuses including its two most prestigious, UCLA and Berkeley, joined forces in what was the biggest student protest for more than a generation... The scale of the protests has come as a shock to state authorities.” - The Guardian (UK)

“being president of the University of California is like being manager of a cemetery” - UC President Mark Yudof. (The whole interview is shockingly appalling.) See:
§UC Berkeley
by josh Friday Sep 25th, 2009 4:58 AM
Planning next steps..

(This photo, and the one above from the Daily Californian -
§UC Berkeley
by josh Friday Sep 25th, 2009 4:58 AM
Planning next steps..

(Photo from the Daily Californian -
by josh Friday Sep 25th, 2009 4:58 AM
Photo from the Sacramento Bee.

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by Catherine
Friday Sep 25th, 2009 9:54 AM
This is great, Josh!

Some more links from around the world:

And on behalf of my campus, UC Davis, I'd like to offer more links to show our active participation. (The Fox40 piece made it look like hardly anyone participated.)
by photo
Friday Sep 25th, 2009 11:17 AM
by Student Power Action Mob
Friday Sep 25th, 2009 12:44 PM
Dear friends from California,

We at the University of Maryland stand with the students, faculty and staff throughout the University of California system who are rising up against corporatization and budget austerity. From the well-organized walkouts to the courageous occupations, you serve as an example to those of us across the nation who face similar conditions. At the University of Maryland, we have faced round after round of cuts and furloughs, and a tuition hike isn’t far off. Without action, Maryland seems to be headed the same place as California.

Our University also has administrators who are more interested in construction projects than maintaining a quality accessible education for students or a just workplace for staff and faculty. Until shared governance becomes more than just an empty phrase, we won’t be able to get our schools’ priorities straight. We’ve all been following your work closely and we turn to you for inspiration in our own struggles. Unity between students, faculty and staff is an essential part of any meaningful large-scale action, and you’ve kicked ass at it. We look forward to helping to build the burgeoning national student movement to which you’ve given voice. Keep up the good work, and we’ll see you in the streets.
Love and Rage,
Student Power Action Mob
(which is)
College Park Students for a Democratic Society
Students for Sensible Drug Policy
Terps for Choice
Feminism without Borders
Community Roots
Students for Justice in Palestine

+ The Exec Board of the UM SGA