Update 4/21/01


 4/21 HARVARD LIVING WAGE SIT-IN UPDATE

 **CURRENTLY**  Students are still sitting in for a living wage.  Stop by
 Mass Hall for as much time as you can to show support, and to prevent their
 removal before the administration negotiates.  Other ways to help follow,
 and are essential to the success of this action.

 **ADMINISTRATION RESPONSE**  The administration continues to refuse to
 negotiate. They have sent out an extremely misleading letter to media and
 those who write support e-mails. Our response to this letter follows.

 We insist that the administrators grant the demands of their students,
 faculty,  alumni, and staff - the people who make up this University.  YOU
 MUST URGE THEM TO DO SO.  Please continue to contact them and demand that
 they negotiate with the protestors.  See www.livingwagenow.com and go to
 "e-mails" for examples of letters that supporters have sent.  Our demands
 follow.

 Neil Rudenstine, President 
 phone: (617) 495-1502 
 fax:(617) 495-1502 
 email: 
 beverly_sullivan@harvard.edu 

 Harvey Fineberg, Provost
 phone:(617) 496-5100
 fax: (617) 496-4630
 email: harvey_fineberg@harvard.edu

 Sally Zeckhauser, VP for Administration, 
 phone: (617) 495-1512
 fax:   (617) 496-6109
 email:  sally_zeckhauser@harvard.edu

 Harry Lewis, Dean of Harvard College, lewis@harvard.edu
 phone: 617-495-1555
 fax: 617-496-8268
 email: lewis@harvard.edu

 Polly Price, Associate VP for Human Resources, 
 Phone: (617) 496-3930
 fax:   (617) 495-8937
 email:  polly_price@harvard.edu  

 SAMPLE LETTER:
 Dear President Rudenstine,

 I am writing to demand that Harvard grant a living wage. I urge you to pay
 all of your employees - both direct and subcontracted -- a living wage of
 $10.25/hr plus benefits.  Harvard University would not be able to operate
 without it's workers.  Currently, many of these workers live below the
 poverty line, and must work outrageous hours in order to make ends meet.
 This is blatantly unjust.

 I also insist that you negotiate with students who are currently taking
 action on this issue. They are, in fact, pursuing what I can only assume
 are values cherished by Harvard. They are thinking critically about issues
 of pressing social concern and taking action on their principles.

 Sincerely,


 **TODAY'S EVENTS**
 All events unless otherwise stated take place in front of Mass Hall.

 ONGOING: Supporters continue to keep vigilance outside of Mass Hall to
 prevent the removal of protestors and demand negotiations.  Stop by for 
 as
 long as you can and picket or make banners and signs.  THIS IS CRUCIAL.  


 9AM:  Rep. Jared Barrios Speaks

 1PM: Living Wage/Anti-FTAA Boston-wide Rally.  Begins in front of Dudley
 House,  Harvard Yard.  
 Speakers include:
 Juliet Schor, professor 
 Representatives of the U'wa Nation
 Ed Childs, dining hall worker
 Andrea Lee, President of Boston NOW
 And politicians, students, and union activists

 8PM: Vigil
 screening of a documentary of the sit-in, made from the inside

 ALL NIGHT: Tent City

 **YOU CAN HELP**
 If you would like to perform or speak at an event, please contact
 617-290-5802 or 617-645-0767.

 If you will be in DC tomorrow (Sunday) contact Gabe (katsh@fas.harvard.edu)
 or Scott (617-359-5815).

 IF YOU HAVE
 2 MINUTES: 
 * Contact administrators and insist that they negotiate with 
 the
 protestors.  Contact info above.

 10 MINUTES:
 * Join us in front of Mass Hall during the day or late at night.  Write
 Rudenstine a postcard on an index card and drop it off at Mass Hall.  
 * 
 Deliver food to protesters inside Mass Hall at meal times.  Contact:
 617-645-0767, rray@fas
 * Tell your friends, TFs, professors, students, and alumni.  Go to office
 hours and make phone calls. 
 * Get support signs at the information table 
 in front of Mass Hall and hang
 them in your dorm windows.  

 30 MINUTES: 
 * Pick up leaflets and posters 
 in front of Mass Hall.  Poster the yard and
 your houses.  Leaflet your classes or in the Yard.  

 FIRST YEARS (AND OTHERS): 

 * Bring your pre-frosh to living wage events or to join the picket line.  

 * Make a banner and hang it from your window.  Supplies in front of Mass 
 Hall.

 ALUMNI, PARENTS, AND DONORS: 
 * Contact the administration and tell them 
 that you will not donate any
 money until they negotiate with protesters or grant a living wage.

 PROFESSORS AND OTHER COMMUNITY MEMBERS: 
 * Write an op-ed.  Contact: 617-596-8146, 
 617-256-5779 or stop by Mass Hall.
 * Speak at a rally.  Contact: 617-290-5802 or 617-645-0767 or stop by Mass
 Hall.  
 * Teach a seminar inside Mass Hall.  Express concern that students 
 are
 missing classes and enter Mass Hall to teach a seminar about your field,
 especially as it relates to economic justice.  Same contacts as for speaking.

 CONTACT: To find out how else you can help, talk to Ben Stoll.
 stoll@fas.harvard.edu; 493-3662; 834-5824

 E-MAIL: If you or someone you know are not receiving and would like to be,
 contact jwagner@fas.harvard.edu or pslm@hcs.harvard.edu 

 **YESTERDAY**
 Senator Ted Kennedy spoke in front of Mass Hall, shook hands of protestors
 inside, put on a living wage pin, and, when asked by one of the living wage
 members inside the building whether he  would call Rudenstine to demand 
 a
 living wage, replied "Yes I will! Certainly!"  SEIU Local 254 held a
 meeting and picketed outside of Mass Hall.  Harvard Hillel held a Shabbat
 service outside of Mass Hall.  They were not allowed to enter the building
 or even distribute prayer books to the protesters.  A tent city began, as
 three protesters exited to expand the sit-in outside.

 **DEMANDS**
 All Harvard workers, whether directly employed or hired through outside
 firms, must be paid a living wage of at least $10.25 per hour, adjusted
 annually to inflation, and with basic health benefits.  Complete
 implementation of such a living wage policy requires three other simple 
 steps:

 * To ensure that the university does not use subcontracting and
 reclassification to cut wages and benefits-as the Harvard Corporation has
 agreed it should not-Harvard must adopt a policy of maintaining wage and
 benefit levels when jobs are outsourced or reclassified.  Our
 Implementation Report contains methods for assuring this which should be
 adopted.

 * A board must be created, not appointed by the administration, to oversee
 implementation of the living wage policy.  The board should have binding
 policy-making power to enforce the policy, and should consist of workers,
 union representatives, faculty, members of PSLM, and an administrator. 


 * Harvard relies on the labor of workers both on campus and off, and both
 must be covered by the university's living wage policy.  Workers in
 factories that produce Harvard goods must therefore be assured a living
 wage for their community; indeed, Harvard has already agreed to a Code of
 Conduct which contains a commitment to this very idea.  In order to
 determine whether factories are complying with Harvard's Code, however, 
 the
 university must join the Worker Rights Consortium, the only independent
 factory monitoring group which satisfies the Code's guidelines.

 **RESPONSE TO HARVARD'S STATEMENT**
 1.  Harvard says:  "A very small fraction of Harvard employees (about 400
 ...) were paid less than $10 per hour."

 The truth is:  The University's own figures reveal at least 1000 - perhaps
 2000 - workers at Harvard getting less than a living wage.  Harvard
 obscures the truth by talking about "Harvard employees" and ignoring the
 many people who work at Harvard for Harvard through a contracting firm.
 These people do the same work, be it maintenance, cafeteria or security
 guard, as employees on the Harvard payroll.  In many cases, subcontract
 employees have simply replaced direct employees, or Harvard has converted
 direct employees to subcontracted ones, slashing their wages and benefits
 in the process.  Furthermore, Harvard leaves out of many calculations
 "casual" employees - non-unionized employees who are supposed to work only
 a limited number of hours for Harvard, but often work more than Harvard's
 rules allow.  They too do the same jobs as "regular" Harvard workers.

 In fact, we believe that significantly more than 500 subcontracted workers
 get less than a living wage, which would make the total closer to 2000.
 Harvard manipulates the definition of "Harvard employee" to deny many of
 the people who make Harvard work.

 2.  Harvard says:  "There have been a number of occasions for the [the
 Living Wage Campaign] to present their views ... to members of the
 University administration."

 The truth is:  Harvard has repeatedly denied the Living Wage Campaign any
 opportunity to speak to the body that makes the ultimate decision about
 whether workers at Harvard get a living wage.  That body is the Harvard
 Corporation, which has ultimate authority over the running of the
 university under Harvard's bylaws.  We have repeatedly petitioned for a
 meeting with the Corporation, and Harvard has repeatedly refused.

 3.  Harvard says:  "The 1999-2000 review ... recommended innovative
 programs to enhance the status and opportunities of service employees.
 These recommendations [] have been adopted by the University."

 The truth is:  By its own admission, Harvard is not close to implementing
 the recommendations that it said last May it was adopting.  Associate Vice
 President for Human Resources Polly Price told us that she would speak with
 subcontractors about the recommendations in January 2001.  In March 2001,
 she told us that she would do so this summer.  In the meantime, Harvard 
 has
 not even written the "code of conduct" that it promised to impose on
 subcontracting firms.  

 In the six months after Harvard approved the recommendations, 
 the Living
 Wage Campaign spoke to workers from all areas of the university.  We did
 not find a single worker who had heard of the increased access to benefits
 that the report promises. Workers who were eligible for benefits were still
 not receiving them, and didn't even know that they should be receiving
 them.  President Rudenstine told us that if workers didn't know that they
 were entitled to benefits, it was their unions' fault for not passing the
 news along.  But, as noted above, the truth is that many subcontracted and
 casual workers are not unionized, so if they are unaware of the benefits
 Harvard promised the fault can rest only with Harvard.

 Harvard speaks with particular pride of the Bridge Program, which teaches
 English to workers at Harvard.  But workers have told the Living Wage
 Campaign that they signed up for the program months ago and never heard
 back from management.  The truth is that during the fall 2000 semester, 
 the
 Bridge Program served only 143 workers-hundreds fewer than anticipated.
 And Vice President Price told us that Harvard expects the program not to
 expand in the spring semester.

 4. Harvard says:  "[T]here have been a number of occasions for the students
 to present their views directly to the committee [Ad Hoc Committee on
 Employment Practices]."

 The truth is:  Although the committee did meet with students, in its
 seventeen meetings it only found time to meet with one worker.  That worker
 was brought to the committee by the Living Wage Campaign.

 5.  Harvard says:  "The 1999-2000 review [was] conducted by a faculty
 committee."

 The truth is:  The committee's own report lists its composition as six
 professors and two administrators.  Another four administrators served as
 staff to the committee(including Polly Price, discussed above).  The
 committee included no students and - oddly, given its mandate to study
 Harvard's employment policies - no Harvard workers.  All its members were
 handpicked by President Rudenstine.  An administration-faculty committee
 selected by the administration cannot represent the faculty, much less the
 University.

 6.  Harvard says:  "These recommendations [from the Ad Hoc Committee] ...
 include expanded availability of health benefits for part-time workers."

 The truth is:  If it is ever implemented, the Committee's proposal may well
 reduce health care for Harvard workers.  Currently part-time employees on
 the Harvard payroll are offered health insurance if they work over twenty
 hours a week.  The committee recommended lowering that to sixteen hours.
 The risk is obvious:  Harvard and its subcontractors will simply cut
 part-time workers down to 15 hours per week.  When Harvard promised health
 insurance to part-timers working 20 hours per week, a lot of them were
 suddenly cut back to 19 hours.  We suggested independent monitoring to
 protect workers against such cutbacks;  Harvard refused.  

 7.  Harvard 
 says:  "[T]he University meets and exceeds its stated goal of
 providing fair ... compensation and benefits packages for its employees."

 The truth is:  We agree that Harvard has stated this goal;  the problem 
 is
 that Harvard is not living up to it.  The National Low-Income Housing
 Commission estimates that a wage of over $15 per hour is necessary to
 afford a two-bedroom apartment in the Boston area. Another study, published
 by Wider Opportunities for Women, found that in a family with two working
 adults and one child, each adult needed to earn $11.41 per hour to live 
 in
 the Cambridge area in 1997. A single parent with one child needed to earn
 $17.47. In Boston, the corresponding figures were $10.08 and $15.28. These
 figures do not include extravagant living.  They do not even include the
 rise in the cost of living over the last three years.  
 Those minimal wages 
 are why workers at Harvard are taking second and even
 third jobs elsewhere, working 70 and 80 hours per week.  Those minimal
 wages are why some Harvard custodians regularly eat in soup kitchens.   


 In fiscal year 1999, Harvard paid $10 million to one fund manager - about
 as much as it would have cost to give a living wage to 2000 other
 employees.  Does Harvard think that that is fair?

 Thanks for your support!

 The Harvard Living Wage Campaign
 www.livingwagenow.com