Please visit UC Budget for more information and news briefs about the ongoing budget issues and reasons for the scheduled walk-out.
What is the UCDOC
UCDOC (UCD Organizing Committee) is a group of concerned graduate students, formed in response to the ongoing crisis within UC, primarily to publicize the crisis and events surrounding it; as well as to help educate the UCD community. We actively seek new members from all departments on campus—the more voices, the better we can speak to the situation of UCD as a whole. To date we have undertaken numerous educational and mobilizing projects. In actively seeking new members, we actively seek and encourage still more new projects.
This is a graduate student-lead advocacy group: separate from the overall Graduate Student Association advocacy work and overall organization.
UC Budget Talking Points
The UCDOC would like to empower students to engage the administration here on campus, UCOP, the Regents and our Governor regarding the most recent fee increases. Please see UC Budget Talking Points.pdf for important talking points for your activism and upcoming activities where you may engage these sources.
Many people ask protesters, “Why are students protesting the UC instead of the State of CA?” Please view this document created by the UCDOC Q&A Guide.pdf for answers to those and other questions.
Need more help discussing these issues with friends, family, and/or the general public? Check out this Student Organizing Rap.doc for more talking points.
Ways to Take Action
Here is a SAMPLE Budget Cuts Letter.doc, which you can distribute to friends, family, alumni, etc. that they can send to UCOP.
National Call for March 4 Strike and Day of Action to Defend Public Education
(Please Forward Widely!)
National Call for March 4 Strike and Day of Action To Defend Public Education
California has recently seen a massive movement erupt in defense of public education — but layoffs, fee hikes, cuts, and the re-segregation of public education are attacks taking place throughout the country. A nationwide resistance movement is needed.
We call on all students, workers, teachers, parents, and their organizations and communities across the country to massively mobilize for a Strike and Day of Action in Defense of Public Education on March 4, 2010. Education cuts are attacks against all of us, particularly in working-class communities and communities of color.
The politicians and administrators say there is no money for education and social services. They say that "there is no alternative" to the cuts. But if there's money for wars, bank bailouts, and prisons, why is there no money for public education?
We can beat back the cuts if we unite students, workers, and teachers across all sectors of public education — Pre K-12, adult education, community colleges, and state-funded universities. We appeal to the leaders of the trade union movement to support and organize strikes and/or mass actions on March 4. The weight of workers and students united in strikes and mobilizations would shift the balance of forces entirely against the current agenda of cuts and make victory possible.
Building a powerful movement to defend public education will, in turn, advance the struggle in defense of all public-sector workers and services and will be an inspiration to all those fighting against the wars, for immigrants rights, in defense of jobs, for single-payer health care, and other progressive causes.
Why March 4? On October 24, 2009 more than 800 students, workers, and teachers converged at UC Berkeley at the Mobilizing Conference to Save Public Education. This massive meeting brought together representatives from over 100 different schools, unions, and organizations from all across California and from all sectors of public education. After hours of open collective discussion, the participants voted democratically, as their main decision, to call for a Strike and Day of Action on March 4, 2010. All schools, unions and organizations are free to choose their specific demands and tactics — such as strikes, rallies, walkouts, occupations, sit-ins, teach-ins, etc. — as well as the duration of such actions.
Let's make March 4 an historic turning point in the struggle against the cuts, layoffs, fee hikes, and the re-segregation of public education.
- The California Coordinating Committee
(To endorse this call and to receive more information contact email@example.com and check out www.defendcapubliceducation.wordpress.com )
System-wide Call to Strike November 18-20, 2009
Support the 52 arrested at Mrak on 11/19!
*The Fight for Public Education Continues! Protest on the Quad!
Organizers: UC Davis Organizing Committee
Contact: Catherine Fung | firstname.lastname@example.org
Next week the UCDOC has several events organized to join and support the system-wide protests and all-campus strike. Please see the attached UCDOC Flyer.pdf for information regarding these events including:
• 11/10 A NIGHT OF SPOKEN WORD & PROTEST! 7:30-10pm 1001 Giedt Hall
• 11/16 TEACH-IN! COME LEARN ABOUT THE CRISIS OF PUBLIC EDUCATION IN CALIF. 7:00PM 1001 Giedt Hall
• 11/18 UC DAVIS CARAVAN TO MASSIVE RALLY AT NOON AT UCB SPROUL PLAZA meet for rides at Mondavi Center at 9AM!
• 11/19 UCDA SPEAK OUT! 10am at MRAK HALL
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION REGARDNIG THE STUDENTS CALL TO ACTION
You can also find the following supplemental materials:
• Faculty Pledge to Strike.pdf November 18-20 supporting the students who wish to protest the 32% fee increase the Regents will vote on November 19, 2009
• Letter for students to send to their professors requesting their support in the strike, Petition Your Professor to Strike.pdf
• Information regarding how the How UC Pledges Your Tuition.pdf
For more information about this ongoing process please see
In addition, here are a few URLs linking to prominent sources of info:
UC Strike homepage: http://ucstrike.com/
UCDOC Facebook group: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=167590587534
Remaking the University, a UC-centered but statewide aggregator of news and views, with tons of great info: http://utotherescue.blogspot.com/
Video and News Coverage of Protest Against Fee Hikes at UC Davis
November 18, 2009 the Aggie UC Regents vote to increase fees 32 percent today
November 19, 2009 the Aggie UC committee approves 32 percent student fee hike
Nikki Sun reporting live from Mrak during the protests
Gaby De Anda reporting from the sit-in interviewing students
The Regents vote to increase fees system-wide made national news. CNN features students' protests throughout the system, including at UC Davis November 19, 2009 and ongoing protests that continue November 20, 2009 and again on November 21, 2009
Fox-40 students will continue to protest after the initial arrests in Mrak, protesting continues the week of Thanksgiving
Ericka So reporting on the progress of negotiations between the protesters and the administration on November 24, 2009
News 10 on UC Davis protests
November 24, 2009 Study shows Californians value public higher education
ASUCD Senate Resolution
The following is an email sent to the ASUCD Senate Table concerning the Resolution passed on November 19th during the protest at Mrak Hall. While I was being arrested, the Senate met outside of Mrak and passed an amazing and progressive resolution issuing a "Vote of No Confidence" in UC Higher Leadership as a statement that administrators are not advocating for UC students they way we believe they should be. I saw video of this resolution being passed after I was released from County Jail, and I can honestly say that I have never been more proud to sit on the senate table and to be a UC student.
Your ASUCD President, Joe Chatham, has vetoed this Resolution.
You may recall another veto of Joe Chatham's, that of the veto of the Ethnic Graduation bill last quarter. It seems to me that a precedent has been set by Joe Chatham, that every time the Senate makes great strides in progressive advocacy for the UC Student body, Joe vetoes it.
I encourage you to attend the Senate meeting tomorrow at 6:10 in the Mee room of the Memorial Union to express to Joe Chatham and the rest of the senate that a veto of one white male is hardly representative of the entire UC student body.
I have chosen to veto Senate Resolution #9 for the following reasons:
First, a vote of no confidence “in the leadership of the UC” is too broad a statement to make on behalf of the students of UC Davis. I agree that there is great need for improvement within the UC administration, however, this terminology is ambiguous about who exactly we are declaring a vote of no confidence in. The word “leadership” could go as far as to include administrators such as Brett Burns, Mark Champagne, Bruce Campbell and others who are working tirelessly with pay-cuts to maintain our university’s quality.
Second, I believe that making a vote of no confidence is not the right thing to do. It is deconstructive. Instead, we are better off laying out constructive demands that have the possibility of improving our situation.
Third, this resolution was passed in an environment where there was no room for discussion, amendment or dissent. I believe that careful consideration should be given to all legislation and that all students should have the opportunity to comment in an open public forum. I do not feel that this was possible at the meeting where SR #9 was passed.
Therefore, I have written an alternative resolution which will be seen as urgent at this week’s senate meeting addressed to the UC Regents and President Mark Yudof articulating our concerns and presenting concrete demands for them to act upon.
Associated Students, UC Davis
344 Memorial Union
One Shields Ave.
Davis, CA 95616
September 24 Walkout Coverage and Reactions
UC Berkeley walkout takes to/over the streets here.
California Aggie op-ed encouraging students not to join in the protest.
What is happening on September 24, 2009?
UC faculty have organized a faculty walkout in support of students and staff, and in defense of public education in California.
UC graduate students have organized a grad student walkout in support of faculty, students, and staff, and in defense of public education in California.
UC undergraduate students have organized a undergrad student walkout in support of faculty, students, and staff, and in defense of public education in California
The UC Student Association (UCSA), representing every campus except Davis ASUCD/GSA and the UCLA Graduate Student Association, unanimously passed a resolution supporting the walkout, and the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) also endorsed the walkout.
The Coalition of University Employees CUE which primarily represents university administrators recently voted to sympathy strike in support of the UPTE strike
The Davis campus is planning a rally on the Quad at noon, in addition to support at the UPTE picket lines that morning.
Brief Details; Each Section has More Details Below
As you may be aware, a grassroots organization of UC graduate students have called for a walkout on September 24th. Graduate students should follow their own consciences in deciding whether or not to participate in the walkout. Below is information intended to help you make an informed decision about your participation or non-participation in this action.
LINKS: The grad student and faculty walkout is in support of UPTE's one-day strike. Here is the graduate student letter of support note link is a PDF and the letter in support drafted for the faculty walkout. You can obtain more information and read the graduate student letter at grad walk-out. UC undergrads have also recently called for a walkout and the letter is available here. All of these pages contain many links to information about the walkout.
Please note that UPTE's strike is the only official, organizationally-led event on the 24th. The faculty and grad student walkouts are being organized on the ground through grassroots outreach.
PAY: The university is officially allowed to dock one day of pay for people who are scheduled and choose not to teach on the 24th, but organizers indicate that it is unlikely based on past experiences. However, please be aware that a one-day pay dock is possible.
JOB PROTECTION: TAs and Instructors who choose not to teach at all on the 24th are safe from disciplinary action due to our UAW union membership. However, GSRs and students in other non-teaching positions may not be protected; if this is you, please contact your union representative at UAW for further information on your rights and protections.
INFORMING STUDENTS: In order to maintain job protection if you are scheduled to teach on the 24th, you can inform your students of your plans ahead of time, e.g. by emailing them via SmartSite. However, you cannot walk into the classroom on the 24th, speak to your students, then walk out again. If you do the latter, you lose union protection and face any disciplinary action on your own.
TEACHING ASSISTANTS: If you are a TA with a class scheduled for the 24th, you may choose to communicate directly with the professor of your course about your plans. However, you are not legally required to do so.
AFTER THE 24th: Because of union rules, our jobs are only protected when we participate on the 24th (the duration of the one-day UPTE strike). As it stands now, if any actions continue after the 24th, individuals will be participating on their own, without legal protection against docked pay, disciplinary action, or dismissal.
The Walkout in Relation to GSA
The Graduate Student Association has bylaws in place for who can call an emergency General Assembly Meeting. The requirements have not been met to call an Emergency General Assembly meeting to discuss the 9/24 walk-out prior to this scheduled event. The Graduate Student Association is non-partisan and cannot endorse political activities without the approval from the General Assembly. As an emergency meeting has not been called; these issues will be addressed at the first scheduled GSA Assembly meeting in October.
Since the GSA cannot vote on the issue without the Assembly, nor can the GSA call for a vote from the graduate student body regarding the 9/24 walkout (as this vote requires first General Assembly approval to write a resolution and then the resolution would require a majority vote from the entire graduate student population), all that can be said on this GSA web page at present is that graduate students should act according to their own consciences. We offer here some information about the rights and protections afforded those students who choose to honor the UPTE picket lines and support the walkout by suspending grad student teaching and official university business on 9/24, so that all graduate students can make informed decisions as to their actions that day.
Job Protection and Pay
Under the UAW contract, individual TAs and Instructors who choose not to teach or engage in university business on 9/24 are protected from disciplinary action. (GSRs and students in non-teaching positions are advised to contact the union for further information about their rights and protections.)
Grad students who wish to inform their students about their plans to walkout can do so in advance by email and via SmartSite, which ensures protection under the union contract. However, that protection will be nullified if you go to your class, discuss the walkout with your students, and then walk out.
The university is officially allowed to dock the pay of students who are scheduled to teach but walk out on 9/24. While this has not often happened in the past when students chose to honor picket lines, you should be aware that a one-day pay dock is a possibility.
Additionally, union protection for this walkout is only for the day of September 24 (the duration of the one-day UPTE strike). After the 24th, any work stoppage is subject to disciplinary action.
Why are the strike and walkout happening?
The UPTE strike is, essentially, in response to unfair labor practices and the university's failure to bargain in good faith. For further details, see UPTE's strike FAQ.
From the faculty walkout statement:
Under the cover of the summer months, UC administration has pushed through a program of tuition hikes, enrollment cuts, layoffs, furloughs, and increased class sizes that harms students and jeopardizes the livelihoods of the most vulnerable university employees. These decisions fundamentally compromise the mission of the University of California. They are complicit with the privatization of public education, and they have been made in a manner that flouts the principle of shared governance at the core of the UC faculty's capacity to guide the future of the University in accordance with its mission.
The primary demands set forth in the walkout statements from faculty and students include:
No furloughs or paycuts for employees making under $40,000.
The immediate institution of the Academic Senate Council's July 29 recommendation regarding the implementation of furloughs. (For background on this, see UCSB professor Chris Newfield's analysis.)
A complete rollback of student fees to 2008-2009 levels, and no new fee increases beyond the rate of inflation.
Full disclosure of the UC budget.
How does this particularly affect students and faculty in the sciences?
How will budget cuts affect students and faculty in the sciences?
increased tuition — Tuition fees may increase over 30% for undergrads and as much as 15% for grad students by Fall 2010. UC President Yudof has also proposed additional tuition increases for undergrads majoring in business and engineering and for grad students in the medical and law schools.
limited lab budgets — Our PIs will be forced to cover the extra expense of increased tuition. And, if our labs are already strapped for cash, grad students will need to find additional positions to cover educational costs.
fewer funding opportunities — Yet, as budgets are slashed, as faculty are released, and as enrollment drops (due to tuition increases), grad students will find fewer opportunities for lab assistantships and teaching appointments. At the same time, the competition for even scarcer state funding will only intensify.
no support for basic research — As the government gives less and less money to the UCs, our labs and projects will depend more and more on funding from private companies. If industries are only interested in application-based research, what will happen to basic science research at the UCs?
Postdoctoral Scholar Layoffs
The GSA Chair was given permission to share this email with graduate students concerning the lack of protection for postdoctoral scholars and how this affects undergraduates and future postdocs (current grads).
I write to share with you information I have already circulated among graduate students in my department regarding the recent layoffs of postdoctoral lecturers jointly appointed in the English Department and University Writing Program. I am (or perhaps more accurately, was) one of the affected postdoctoral lecturers.
Along with the two other English/UWP postdoctoral lecturers assigned to teach UWP courses in Winter and Spring '10, I was laid off by the University Writing Program yesterday afternoon. We can keep our scheduled English courses (which for me means Fall '09 and Spring '10) on a per-term basis, but we lose our other two classes and with them our health insurance. Several UWP lecturers beyond the three postdocs were also laid off. Chris Thaiss, UWP Chair, has made clear to me that there is no chance of our getting those sections of UWP101 back. David Robertson, English Department Chair, has informed me that there is no chance of the English department making up the postdocs' missing classes with additional English department courses.
I want to stress that this layoff is a direct result of the budget crisis and was framed that way by Dr. Thaiss both in his conversation with me and in his subsequent e-mail to all UWP faculty. It not only impacts those of us who have lost all or half of our employment, it also negatively affects our undergraduate students who will suffer because 15 sections of UWP courses required for graduation will not and cannot be offered without us. Surely this reduction will hinder many students' progress toward graduation.
Please share this information with graduate students and take it into account when making choices about the welfare of UCD graduate students. It illustrates the concrete impact the budget crisis is having on our university community. Many UCD graduate students count on a year of postdoc teaching to provide income and health insurance in the year immediately following graduation, during the search for a more permanent job. I did. Now, one week before I was scheduled to begin teaching my first class of my postdoctoral lecturer term, I find that security taken away.
Thanks for your time and consideration.
UCD's Official Response
‘When UC decided that faculty furlough days could not be taken on instructional days, it was thinking of students. Even in this financial crisis, the university wants to do everything it can to ensure that you continue to receive a world-class education.’ — Chancellor Linda Katehi, in a letter to students on 9/23 that did not mention the UPTE and CUE strikes or the student-led organizing efforts that were endorsed by UCSA.
For more information on the the official response from UCDavis, visit UCD's News & Information Page".
Various Faculty Viewpoints
A letter to the SacBee from some UCD professors who will not walk out as they feel teaching is more than just being paid. ...We know we're not alone. The independent, dues-paying Davis Faculty Association recently asked its 166 members whether the association should support the walkout. Of those who cast ballots, 65.7 percent voted "No."
The same issue of the Bee also ran a letter from other UCD faculty explaining some of the reasons for the walkout and for the current crisis of public education in California. We believe the real value of union, student and faculty mobilizations is their highlighting that the status quo is unacceptable. If we continue on the current path of simply managing successive rounds of budget cuts, we will undercut the higher education system beyond recognition.
Discussion of why the recent administrative actions matter for UC students, in Berkeley professor Catherine Cole's letter to students.
Overview of California and UC budget history by UCSF professor and former chair of the UC Committee on Planning and Budget, Stanton Glantz.
Plenty of other informational links from the grad student walkout site.
"It Used to be Free" — basic Q&A on the UC budget crisis.
webcast presentations by Berkeley faculty from all sectors of campus, on the budget crisis, shared governance, history of California public education, student fee increases, and more.
Blog Remaking the University for extensive information on all budget issues and where you can find a link to the UC Davis Organizing Committee's facebook
Letter Is there really a budget crisis? requesting budget transparency
Note: You must be logged in to add comments
2009-09-21 12:34:20 Thank you for the links, they were most helpful. —AlexMandel
2009-09-23 12:24:26 Excellent page! This answered many of my questions and has some great links! Good job, GSA! —MicheleTobias
2009-09-24 07:15:18 Regarding the Sac Bee letter quoted under UCD's official response (not sure that's the right category for an op-ed by two faculty? Were they speaking on behalf of UCD, officially?): it's interesting the authors don't mention how many faculty actually cast ballots in that vote. But even if ALL 166 members voted, 65.7% of them would still be far fewer than the number of Davis faculty who have signed on to support the walkout statement. —DavisOrganizingCommittee