Human Rights Studies and the Current Labor Action
The University of California, Davis Human Rights Studies Program recognizes that University of California graduate students, researchers, student employees and postdocs have engaged in efforts to secure fair wages, benefits and working conditions. Considering these efforts, we express our support for our fellow academic workers and call on the UC to bargain in good faith and hope a just and fair agreement can be achieved quickly.
We also reaffirm our support for Article 23:3 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948)
Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable remuneration ensuring for himself and his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection; and
Article 8:1:a of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966)
The right of everyone to form trade unions and join the trade union of his choice, subject only to the rules of the organization concerned, for the promotion and protection of his economic and social interests. No restrictions may be placed on the exercise of this right other than those prescribed by law and which are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security or public order or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.
Faculty stress that that there is a difference between labor — especially labor negotiated by contract — and scholarship. They recognize and value both.
Faculty will continue to teach, and may offer academic programming as part of our scholarship and academic practice. Education is a human right, as is academic freedom and freedom of enquiry.
Faculty will not replace any labor provided by graduate assistants or associate instructors. These are impactful actions: over 400 students in Human Rights Studies will be affected – lectures and discussion sections will not take place; papers and exams will not be graded; and office hours will be cancelled.