The Local 33 graduate student union held a hunger strike. Meanwhile, Yale College Republicans feasted on barbecued beef, corn and baked beans. Members of the Yale College Republicans served the meal to those on the plaza. Keep in mind this was just feet away from the hunger strike. Local 33 was holding the hunger strike to protest the school’s decision to not negotiate a new contract.
Instead of worrying about the hunger strike, Local 33 stayed focused on staying healthy and not eating. Wait, there’s no way they weren’t worried about the hunger strike, it was happening just feet away! Eight of the grad student teacher had not eaten in days according to the New Haven. This had to tear them apart being this close to food.
“I’m not really focused on that,” Aaron Greenberg, Local 33 chairman and political science graduate student teacher said to the New Haven Register. “I’m focused on making sure we have lots of water, make sure I’m healthy. We have a check-in with our nurse this afternoon. We are focused on that.”
The union chapter is attempting to use the hunger strike as a source of joy. He also invited others to come join them. “Instead of eating your lunch, sit with us and lift our spirits,” it says on a flier.
Local 33 is the graduate student teachers’ union. It is part of the international labor union UNITE HERE. The union is protesting the school’s negotiation to not negotiate a contract. Greenberg claims the school is stalling in negotiations until President Trump appoints a new head of the National Labor Relations Board. They think the new head will be someone who is harsher toward the union’s requests.
Greenberg said that Yale President Peter Salovey, as well as “top members of the Yale administration and members of the Yale Corporation are deciding to side with Donald Trump over members of their own community. I think that is unacceptable. I think that is despicable. They say we have to wait so we are waiting without eating.”
So while their hunger strike continues, the Republicans will not only eat, but also distribute to those walking past the hunger strike. If those participating in the hunger strike get too hungry, they can grab a plat just feet away. So at least they have that going for them. This should be a real test for their resolve.