For immediate release
October 5, 2016
Tiffany Ten Eyck
Amidst wide student support, Harvard administration fails to reach agreement with workers
Cambridge, MA—After failing to reach an agreement yesterday, Harvard’s dining hall workers went on strike starting Wednesday morning. Instead of clocking in for their shifts, workers are picketing at dozens of locations across Harvard’s undergraduate and graduate campuses. The strike will continue until a fair agreement is reached.
The two principal demands of Harvard’s dining hall workers are affordable health care and sustainable incomes of at least $35,000 a year.
Harvard dining hall workers are asking Harvard to back off proposals that would make basic medical services, such as taking their kids to the doctor, prohibitively expensive.
Harvard students have shown overwhelming support for the dining hall workers. The Harvard Undergraduate Council and the Harvard Crimson Editorial Board have endorsed the strike. Harvard Medical School students have called the University’s proposals unaffordable. Graduate students at Harvard Law School, Harvard Divinity School, and Harvard School of Public Health have all pledged support. More than 3,300 signatures have been added to an online support petition.
Bargaining between Harvard’s food service workers, represented by UNITE HERE Local 26, and Harvard administration began May 20. Dining hall workers were not able to reach an agreement with administrators during Tuesday’s sessions, which were the 19th time the sides have met.
What: Harvard dining services workers on strike
When: Wednesday, October 5
Key media opportunities:
6:00 am – Picket line, Annenberg hall (main cafeteria for first years), 45 Quincy St,
9:00 am – Picket lines will converge in rally, Science Center Plaza, 1 Oxford St, Cambridge,
Who: Harvard food service workers on strike, Harvard undergraduate and graduate students
Visuals: Harvard dining hall workers chanting and holding picket signs outside of Annenberg hall in 6am, the main cafeteria for Harvard freshmen; striking workers getting materials out of 29-foot motor homes functioning as mobile strike headquarters.