UAW Local 2865 – Cybersecurity Guide

Zeke Trautenberg, head steward at UCLA, has prepared a cybersecurity guide—how to protect yourself and your online communications today.

Full guide below, and also handily downloadable as a PDF

1) Web Browsers

For browsing on your desktop, use Firefox. If you prefer to use Google Chrome, try the open source Chromium browser, which is based on Chrome. Always browse in “Private” or “Incognito” modes. For maximum anonymity, use the Tor Browser.

On your desktop browser, install Electronic Frontier Foundation’s HTTPS Everywhere and Privacy Badger extensions to limit tracking of your browsing. The Disconnect extension is also a good tool.

For browsing on your phone, use Firefox mobile. For increased privacy, use Firefox Focus, which does not store cookies or search history.

Hot Tip: Adjust your browser’s privacy and security settings on your desktop and phone. Make sure that “Do Not Track” settings are active and that your browser is storing minimal cookies. Clear your cache and search history often.

2) Search Engines

Use Startpage and Ixquick for increased privacy. DuckDuckGo is also a good option. You can add Startpage as an extension on Firefox. Follow these instructions to Startpage it to your Chrome or Chromium search box.

3) Email

Gmail neither free nor secure. The service scans your emails and sells your information to third-party advertisers. ProtonMail and StartMail are good options for a more secure email service. ProtonMail is based in Switzerland and StartMail is based in the Netherlands.

Use PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) protocol to encrypt your emails. To encrypt your emails with the Apple Email Client, use GPG Tools. You can use Enigmail with the Thunderbird Email Client.

4) Messaging and Phone Calls

Use the open-source app Signal, which is the standard for end-to-end encryption. You can also make secure phone calls. For information on their cryptographic key system works

see these instructions. Signal can also be installed on your desktop via the Chromium or Chrome browsers

5) Passwords and Passcodes

Use unique passwords. Make sure that they are long and include symbols. Alternatively, you can use password managers, but you can never be totally sure that they will not be hacked.

Turn on two-factor verification for your banking, email, and social media accounts. If you use Gmail, follow these instructions.

Hot Tip: Make sure that your passcode for your mobile device is at least six digits long. If you are going to a protest, disable the fingerprint reader.

6) Virtual Private Networks

When you use internet on campus or at cafés, the connection is often insecure. For more secure browsing, use a virtual private network or VPN, which creates a secure tunnel connection between your computer and server in the US or elsewhere. VPNs protect your identity by shielding your Internet Provider (IP) address and Domain Name Server (DNS). Use NordVPN, which is easy to install and headquartered in Panama.

7) Additional Reading https://hackblossom.org/cybersecurity/ http://openpgp.org/software/

Share : Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on GooglePlusShare on PinterestShare on Linkedin



UAW 2865 Supports the 12K Members of Teamsters 2010 on Strike!

This Tuesday, January 10, 2017, 12,000 comrades in Teamsters Local 2010 will be on strike and need our support! These clerical and skilled trades employees are fighting for fair raises and benefits in the face of management’s refusal to bargain in good faith. Their wages are so low that over 70% of workers suffer from hunger or food insecurity, and their real wages are down by 24% over the past two decades.

Locations for local actions are listed below. Additionally, in Los Angeles, Local 2010 members in the skilled trades will be on a ULP strike for five-days, from January 6-10. Skilled Trades workers at UCLA have been working without a contract or raises for four years, and are paid as much as $10 an hour below prevailing wage. Picketing will occur all week at: 100 Medical Plaza Driveway, Los Angeles, CA 90024, January 6-10, 6:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

UAW is bound by Article 19 of our contract not to engage in sympathy strikes. Thus, the UAW has not issued a strike notice and is not calling for, promoting or engaging in a sympathy strike. However, as individual students, you can exercise your First Amendment right to free speech to demonstrate your support for the Teamsters workers. If it does not conflict with your work obligations, you have every right to walk on a picket line, write leaflets, and speak out to your colleagues and students about your views on labor relations at UC in general, or with respect to the Teamsters in particular. You can go to the picket line or do other strike support at your work location as long as it is not on work time. At work, you can wear buttons or t-shirts or express your views. You can also decide to personally not cross a picket line, or hold your classes or office hours off campus to avoid picket lines.

The UC Student-Workers Union UAW 2865 strongly supports the struggles of our Teamsters comrades to lift the wages and help prevent hunger among many full-time UC workers and their families. You can read more about their struggle here.

If you think you are receiving any threats about your responsibilities during the strike, please contact your local UAW 2865 campus unit for support.

As our union begins bargaining with management in 2018, it is important that in 2017 we show other UC workers that we support them and stand with their fight.

Picket locations are as follows:

Northern California Strike Locations (1/10/2017):

  • UC Berkeley: Gayley Rd. & Hearst Ave., Berkeley, 7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Lab: Hearst Ave. and Cyclotron Rd., Berkeley, 7:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
  • UC San Francisco: 505 Parnassus Ave., San Francisco, 6:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (Rally at 12 noon)
  • UC Office of the President: 1111 Franklin St, Oakland, CA 94607, 7:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
  • UC Merced: Lake Rd. and Bellevue Rd., Merced, 7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • UC Davis – Campus: Dairy Rd. & Hutchison Dr., Davis CA 7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • UC Davis – Medical Center: X St. & Stockton Blvd., Sacramento, 7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • UC Santa Cruz: Heller Dr. & Empire Grade, Santa Cruz, 6:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Southern California Strike Locations (1/10/2017):

  • UC Los Angeles: 100 Medical Plaza Driveway, Los Angeles, CA 90024, 6:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
  • UC Irvine – Medical Center: 101 The City Drive South, Orange, 7:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
  • UC San Diego – Hillcrest Hospital: 200 W. Arbor Dr., San Diego, 5:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • UC Riverside: 900 University Ave., Riverside, CA 92521, 7:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
  • UC Santa Barbara:  Henley Gate, 7:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

For more information, contact Timothy Mathews, Local 2010 Research Analyst, at 510-292-0020, or tmathews@teamsters2010.org.

Share : Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on GooglePlusShare on PinterestShare on Linkedin



UC Faculty: We Need Your Support!

UC Faculty: We Need Your Support! Help Sustain Mass Action in Support of Student and Worker Demands in the Wake of the Election

*December 2016*

Dear UC Faculty,

As many in our communities have observed, the impending inauguration of Donald Trump poses significant threats to our collective civil liberties, senses of safety, and to the future of public education. As representatives of the student workers union UAW 2865, we acknowledge that there are now widespread calls for mass action beginning on inauguration day, January 20th, and likely continuing long after. A coalition of students and workers across the UC system is joining this nationwide call. Now, more than ever, we are calling on the university and state legislators to extend protections for targeted groups and to ensure the sustainability and accessibility of public education. The incoming administration has threatened to deport undocumented members of our communities, cut federal funding for the sciences and other academic inquiry, cut funding for reproductive healthcare, and register all U.S. residents from Muslim-majority countries in a national database, among other horrifying threats. We take them at their word.

Faculty, especially tenured faculty, are in a strong position to support the January 20th walkout and to continue sustained direct action after that date by cancelling classes or bringing their students to the marches, teach-outs, and protests planned for the day and the following weeks. We recognize that tenured faculty are in a unique position to help sustain mass action even beyond January 20th. You may make clear your intention to not hold classes and withhold your educational labor for as long as it takes until the UC meets the demands issued by campus students and workers.

You can view the attachment for our official demands. They include: making UC a sanctuary campus, meaning administration will put protections in place for undocumented members of our community; free education; ensuring growth, not cuts, in federal funding for the sciences, and public UC support for ending Propositions 209 and 13, which have enabled racial segregation in education.

Withholding your labor in solidarity with this nationwide call means supporting students, workers, and community members who participate in the walkout on January 20th and subsequent walkouts thereafter.

In particular, we are writing to request that faculty:

 

  • Cancel classes on January 20 and join any walkouts, teach-ins, or picket lines
  • Refrain from assigning any work to student workers on January 20
  • Indicate to student workers that they will not face retaliation if they participate in the walkouts.
  • Release a statement from faculty associations endorsing any calls for a general strike or mass action beyond January 20th
  • Release a statement on behalf of the Academic Senate endorsing sustained walkouts or direct actions.
  • Inform undergraduate students that they will not be penalized for supporting walkouts and actions.
  • Share the attached information with undergraduate students to give context for the these actions.

 

The Walkout Call has been circulated statewide to tens of thousands of student workers represented by our union, which will be joined on January 20th by many many more undergraduates and communities. We call on faculty to join this call and stand in solidarity with oppressed communities, civil liberties, and the fight for public education.

In Solidarity,

UAW 2865 Joint Council

(Full Text)

Share : Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on GooglePlusShare on PinterestShare on Linkedin



UAW Local 2865 Endorses the Expansion of Postal Banking

In light of the fact that nearly 28% of U.S. households are underserved by traditional banks, UAW 2865 recognizes the critical need to expand affordable financial services for low-income households. We therefore support the expansion of postal banking and call for the installation of surcharge-free ATMs making it possible for recipients of public benefits to access funds without paying a fee; the expansion of financial services to include payroll check cashing; and the provision of bill paying services and electronic funds transfers in all US post offices.

Endorsement Letter and Brief.

 

Share : Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on GooglePlusShare on PinterestShare on Linkedin



UC-Wide Walkout on Inauguration Day January 20th

UAW 2865 Joins UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA STUDENTS AND WORKERS in the WALKOUT and DIRECT ACTION CAMPAIGN

Beginning January 20th

Against Fascism and Attacks on Public Education, Students, and Workers

FRIDAY, 20 JANUARY 2017: INAUGURATION DAY

NO SCHOOL!

WE DEMAND THAT THE UC ADMINISTRATION:

1) Denounce Donald Trump’s government

2) Restore free education

3) End state policies that enable racial segregation at all levels of education

4) Designate Sanctuary School status to protect undocumented members of our community

5) Grow, not cut, independent science funding; support for increased federal science funding

6) Fully demilitarize UC campuses

7) Fully divest from toxic UC investments

8) Make the UC budget fully transparent.

9) Implement survivor-led process for holding people accountable who commit acts of gender-based and sexual violence

10) Commit to providing free and accessible trans and reproductive healthcare, including abortion access, to students and workers

11) Democratize the Regents

Dear Members,

We are at a historic crossroads. The current state of affairs has been, and under a Trump presidency will only increase in being, untenable for us and our loved ones. We must take action as students, workers, faculty, and staff against the racism, sexism, classism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, and ableism that Trump has normalized in this country, both structurally and rhetorically. We (un)welcome him to office by pledging not to comply with any policies he and his supporters pass that would harm us and our loved ones.

We are a broad and diverse union committed to social justice that works to unite and center the needs and demands of many communities, including immigrants, refugees, undocumented folks, workers, Muslims, poor people, indigenous folks, queer and trans folks, Black folks, Chicanx/Latinx folks, Asian and Pacific Islander folks, Jews, women, survivors of sexual violence, labor activists, people with disabilities, public education activists, civil rights activists, and many others. In these troubling times, we reiterate that an injury to one is an injury to us all.

Many members of our union are part of struggles that have been centuries in the making against structures of white supremacy, xenophobia, and colonial dispossession. In these years, we have witnessed the power of collective action as seen in movements such as the Movement for Black Lives and the Native American-led campaign for justice in Standing Rock. All students at our university have been affected by the chronic defunding and privatization of public education in this country. All workers at our university have been affected by the insidious culture of “right-to-work,” a campaign supported by Trump that undermines workers’ living wages, healthcare, and many other rights and protections by making unions unable to function. While Trump talks about reforming trade deals ostensibly in order to help U.S. workers, we know he will not restore millions of his companies’ jobs back to the United States, we know he will not support a $15 minimum wage, and we know it will continue to be profitable for him to exploit documented and undocumented workers alike through dangerous, poverty-level jobs. We must prepare for the anti-labor climate ahead, including direct threats to the survival of our Union, and we must fight back by centering an understanding of the intersections among labor exploitation, settler colonialism, and white supremacy.

UAW 2865 endorses the UC-Wide Walkout and Direct Action as an explicit refusal of these policies and structures based on hate and profit. Our labor as students and workers plays a key role in providing Trump with a material basis for his power in the presidency, most evident in the military research and production that takes place throughout UC campuses. This military research and production plays a crucial role in the national economy and also lays the foundation for the state’s monopoly on violence. When Trump is talking about mandating Muslims to register in a national database, deporting undocumented migrants, bringing “law and order” to “inner cities,” and “bombing the shit out of ‘em,” he is talking about utilizing the machinery that is produced as a result of our own labor.

We take action against the Trump administration to declare our noncompliance as long as he is in office.

We say, “NO!”

Why We Take Direct Action against UC Administration

The University of California (UC) administration has been complicit in creating the conditions for Trump’s rise to power. UC Regents and administrators are the who’s who of America’s billionaire class, and like Donald Trump, have made massive sums of money through fraud, laundering, and ponzi schemes. UC administration actively courts military contracts, invests in private prisons, collaborates with surveillance firms, and more, all of which are now managed by Donald Trump. Our university has also been complicit with Trump’s anticipated regime of mass deportations. Our current UC President Janet Napolitano served as Secretary of Homeland Security (2009-13) during a period in which this country, through DHS programs like “S-Comm,” deported the highest number of people, both documented and undocumented, in its history.

Meanwhile, the UC administration has cried broke and tripled the cost of education over the past decade. The tuition hikes have only further excluded students from historically underrepresented communities from attending school at our universities: while Black, Native, and Chicanx/Latinx students make up 48% of the total state population, they comprise less than 20% of the UC student body. Administration has structurally excluded youths from working class communities of color from attending the university for the sake of profit by upholding a historically-rooted unequal access to resources along racial lines. Through such policies, what was once legal segregation is now racialized economic segregation. Meanwhile, savvy administrators have appropriated social justice language to offer an illusion of progress. Without having affirmatively intervened in these historically-rooted conditions, the UC administration has minoritized Black, Native, and Chicanx/Latinx students on campus, leaving these populations vulnerable to the types of escalating hate crimes suffered UC-wide in the past year, all while using students of colors’ faces in promotional brochures and alumni fundraising pamphlets. In the first week after Trump’s election, dozens of reports of physical and verbal attacks on UC students from historically underrepresented populations have surfaced throughout social media. UC administrators have not once adequately responded.

It is time UC administrators intervene affirmatively in the interests of our most vulnerable campus and local populations.

We walkout for the purpose of achieving the following immediate demands of the UC Administration:

1) Denounce Donald Trump’s government as racist, sexist, classist, homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic, and ableist. These dynamics have been repeatedly exemplified by the emergence of an empowered and energized white supremacist/alt-right presence on our campuses, whose xenophobic hate speech and propaganda have escalated throughout Trump’s campaign. We demand that all members of the UC’s administrative class clearly and unambiguously denounce the Trump government, circulating this message widely.

2) Restore Free Public Education to undo the structural-level exclusion of students from historically underrepresented communities and to ensure that a UC education becomes legitimately accessible. Structural-level exclusion is the product of inequitable access to resources, such as a university-level education, and bigoted discourse is its byproduct. In mid-November, the UC Regents met to discuss a ten-year plan for tuition increases, set to begin this year. The UC Regents must not only refrain from increasing the cost of public education, which further contributes to the structural-level inequities endorsed by the Trump government, but the Regents must vote to provide fully subsidized, free education to all students: in-state, out-of-state, and international people regardless of citizenship or visa status. We are encouraged by the statewide renewal of Proposition 55 this past November, which taxes high income earners to help fund public education. However, we know that this funding alone will not be sufficient to enable fully subsidized public education for all. To fully support this demand, we call for immediate salary reductions of our system’s most highly paid administrators and for the redirection of these funds to support student and worker housing, healthcare, food access, education, and fair compensation of the labor these services require.

3) End state policies that enable racial segregation at all levels of education, beginning with three key steps. We demand the end of state policies that enable racial segregation at all levels of education and the implementation of policies that better serve our communities, as outlined in the three following points. 3a) the UC administration publicly and clearly support the reversal of Proposition 209 and the reinstatement of affirmative action-based student admissions and employment; 3b) the UC administration publicly and clearly support the reversal of Proposition 13, which has exacerbated the under-resourcing of K-12 education in communities of color and low-income communities, thereby compounding the inaccessibility of these groups to higher education; and 3c) Grant the UC system Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) status to increase the number of undergraduate, state-labeled “Hispanic” students enrolled to meet the 25% criteria for additional federal funding. HSI status further requires that at least 50% of the student population be eligible for federal student aid. This would ensure an increase of students from other underrepresented backgrounds (Black and Native, especially) because the university would be responsible to engage under-resourced communities, of which a large proportion are nonwhite. At campuses where this status has already been granted, we call for the formation of student-led offices to coordinate outreach and funding opportunities for these communities.

4) Designate true sanctuary school status to protect all communities under attack by the Trump government, including but not limited to: undocumented members of our community, Muslims, Arabs, LGBTQQI folks, Palestinians, all refugees (including those from Syria), Black folks, Native folks, Latinx/Chicanx folks, Asian and Pacific Islanders, Jews, and others who have been viciously targeted in language and action by Trump and his alt-right (white supremacist) supporters. By sanctuary we mean ensuring that the UC police, UC administration, and the Governor of California: 1) refuse to cooperate with Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) and other deportation agencies or share any student or worker information or collaborate with any identification or ethnic/religious registration process; 2) publicly declare that ICE and any other police enforcement agency will not be granted physical access to UC campuses, dorms, or other public property under any circumstance; 3) publicly acknowledge that all students, faculty, staff, and other workers be exempt from any and all forms of retribution for taking action to provide safety for students vulnerable to laws of any kind that criminalize undocumented or “illegal” immigrants, as we know that no one is illegal. Finally, in order to ensure that the undocumented members of our community can continue to afford living, studying, and working at the UC, we call upon the UC administration and Governor of California to designate secure funding for undocumented students who will no longer be able to work if DACA is repealed. We also demand the UC apply AFSCME 3299 immigrant rights provisions to all UC workers. We demand UC prohibit the use of E-Verify and expand work authorization provisions, including those related to Social Security “no-match” letters.

5) Grow, not cut, independent science funding. The Trump government has promised to cut important funding to scientific research, especially targeting independent research on the escalating effects of climate change. We acknowledge the importance of maintaining scientific research, and all fields of academic inquiry, that is resolutely independent from corporate agendas that place profit over knowledge. We call on the UC administration and the Governor of California to protect these vital sources of independent funding for research, including that which is desperately needed in the struggles for climate, health, and economic justice. We call on the UC administration and the Governor to also actively and publicly combat any cuts to federal science funding.

6) Fully demilitarize UC campuses. We will no longer accept the surveillance, criminalization, prosecution, repression of public protest, and targeting of particular student and worker groups (such as the Black Student Union, Afrikan Black Coalition, Students for Justice in Palestine, Muslim Students Association, labor unions, among many others) that has become all-too common on our campuses in recent years. The deployment of increasingly heavily armed law enforcement officers equipped with riot gear, militarized vehicles, other military-style technologies, and both lethal and non-lethal weapons is a threat to the kind of supportive and peaceful environment requisite for learning and teaching. We demand immediate disarmament of all police, including campus police agencies, and an end to the research that further enables the technologization of perpetual war. In service of demilitarizing UC campuses, we also demand that the UC cease to receive research funding from entities seeking to profit from warfare enhanced by UC research. The University of California receives roughly a half billion dollars annually from the United States Department of Defense. Combined with another half billion dollars from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and an unknown amount from private military contractors (i.e., Lockheed Martin, Northrup Grumman, Los Alamos National Security LLC, and more), military-related research funding makes up at least one billion dollars of the annual UC budget. The military technologies produced by UC-based research are used to disproportionately exert force on communities of color, both at home and abroad.The STEM fields are so much more than factories for the production of death and destruction–our creativity and skill sets could be much better utilized to solve the world’s most pressing problems, not to create more of them in the name of war and surveillance.

7) Fully divest from toxic UC investments, including fossil fuels, prisons, and companies that benefit from settler colonial occupation and apartheid. We instead demand a reprioritization of investments and research objectives to solely reflect a commitment to social justice, rather than applied military research used in the service of wars that devastate communities. Moreover, all of these investments are protected through heightened militarization of our campuses, which produces a war-like climate in institutions of education. We demand the UC make its investments public and respond to our demands for divesting from violence.

8) Make the UC budget fully transparent. The importance of full budgetary and investment transparency at the UC parallels our concerns about Donald Trump’s financial conflicts of interest that threaten to direct US domestic and foreign policy. We know that Regents and high-level donors have influenced decisions to undertake large capital projects on numerous UC campuses, putting our campuses in debt and using student tuition as leverage. We demand that the UC system-wide budget, and every campus budget, be made fully available to the public. We further demand a moratorium on capital projects.

9) Implement a survivor-led and trauma informed process for holding people accountable who commit acts of gender-based and sexual violence, including harassment. The rampant and under-addressed acts of gender-based and sexual violence that routinely take place within the UC system impact every layer of our campus communities. In most cases, when survivors seek to address these problems, their/our voices are disappeared down bureaucratic channels, as the safety and job security of the people who commit these acts of violence are prioritized over the people they harm. To illuminate the structural nature of this problem, we now know that several of our university’s highest administrators to whom we are made to appeal, including UC Regent Norm Pattiz, have themselves routinely violated the safety particularly of working class women of color, trans women, and people whose gender identities do not conform to a binary. This pattern is structured in systems of white heteropatriarchy, now including “President” Trump among high-ranking authorities who have committed acts of sexual violence. We recognize that the criminal justice system is profoundly flawed in its instrumentalization of sexual violence to cage and incarcerate men of color at disproportionate levels. We seek the implementation of an alternative survivor-led, trauma-centered accountability model that provides resources for survivors and holds their well-being as more important than preserving institutional power or personal prestige.

10) Commit to providing free and accessible trans and reproductive healthcare, including abortion, to students and workers. Given the rhetoric and track record of “President” Trump and his alt-right cabinet-members, we call upon the UC to pledge that its student health centers and insurance will provide continued, accessible, affordable, and high-quality health care coverage, including covering all necessary health care costs for trans folks and reproductive health care costs for women, including the ability to terminate pregnancy. We call upon the UC to guarantee access to these services for undergraduates, graduate students, postdocs, faculty, lecturers, librarians, and all campus staff, as well as their dependents.

11) Democratize the Regents and other UC administration. The governing body of our University should be chosen by faculty, students, and workers, not by the Governor, and the Regents should be held accountable to these constituents. The necessity of a new model of governance at this University is especially evident given conflicts of interest that parallel Donald Trump’s and news about Regent Pattiz’s serial objectification and harassment of women. We call for democratic elections of all university administrators where students, workers, and faculty have a direct vote in the governance of our institution.

Our above-listed demands are the minimal structural changes that the UC administration can implement in order to translate their rhetoric into concrete action. Now is the time for our administration to demonstrate whether they stand on the side of students and workers, or on the side of a racist, sexist, classist, homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic, and ableist government.

We will mobilize now and continuously, beyond elections and candidates, to normalize effective tactics for disruption and dissent. We must target Trump’s government through the channels we can access and where we are located, in the UC system, at the forefront of the national economy and within a nexus of federal and corporate capital flow.

Campus bureaucracy and privatized public universities are not the answer to fascism. We reject both. We will build towards a new university, one that centers economic equity, racial justice, receptivity to gender non-conformity, community collaboration, and global peace at a structural level, not just in rhetoric. Today, we commit to continuing this work, started generations before us, and we walk out with our friends and allies across the UC system in support of these key demands for collective justice.

January 20, 2017, NO SCHOOL! We will fight for another university.

In solidarity,

The UAW 2865 Joint Council

Share : Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on GooglePlusShare on PinterestShare on Linkedin



Letter of Support for Professor Rabab Abdulhadi, Campus Advocates for Justice in Palestine, and Academic Freedom at San Francisco State University

As educators, workers, and students of the University of California we are disturbed by recent developments on the SFSU campus:

1) On October 14, 2016, several racist and Islamophobic posters were plastered on the SFSU campus smearing SFSU Professor Rabab Abdulhadi, accusing her of terrorism and anti-Semitism. Posters also targeted student advocates for justice in Palestine. The posters are claimed by both the Canary Mission and Horowitz Freedom Center, a far-right, off campus organization whose founder is named as a leading Islamophobe by the Southern Poverty Law Center. While the office of the President of the university issued a general rejection of this campaign referring to it as “hateful” and its backers as “extremist,” the statement did not make any reference to or express defense of the specific targets: Dr. Abdulhadi, the GUPS students, and the “Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas” program.

2) In 2013 Prof. Abdulhadi was encouraged by SFSU to establish a collaborative agreement (an MOU: Memorandum of Understanding) with An-Najah National University in Palestine. SFSU AUCIP (All University Committee on International Programs) unanimously voted in favor of the proposal which was then forwarded to the Provost and to SFSU President Leslie Wong who signed it in Fall 2014. On September 7, 2016, Campus Watch/Middle East Forum, led by Daniel Pipes, launched a campaign demanding an end to SFSU collaboration with An-Najah and smearing Professor Abdulhadi with baseless accusations of terrorism and anti-Semitism. Instead of defending Dr Abdulhadi and standing by the SFSU collaborative agreement with An-Najah, President Wong and CSU Chancellor White issued a statement generally upholding the 110 existing SFSU agreements with international universities without naming An-Najah or Dr. Abdulhadi specifically.

As educators, we are appalled by the affront to academic freedom that such attacks represent against Professor Abdulhadi’s right to teach issues related to Palestine and Israel as well as those relating to Arab and Muslim diasporas in the United States. Over the last two years, The AMCHA Initiative, a group that aims to shut down debate on Palestine on university campuses, has baselessly and falsely accused Prof. Abdulhadi as being a collaborator with terrorists because of partnerships she has organized with Palestinian university professors. The SFSU administration has concluded that these accusations have no merit, yet it has caved to continued pressure from these intimidation groups to conduct a 5-year audit of Prof. Abdulhadi’s international travel. These actions give credence to the intimidation groups that want to undermine Dr. Abdulhadi’s academic freedom and right to teach issues related to Palestine and Israel. SF State must denounce these efforts and vigorously defend the academic freedom of Dr. Abdulhadi.

We believe that it is the responsibility of SF State leadership to clearly and unambiguously come out in active support of their faculty and categorically express their absolute intolerance of hate speech and defamation. Fortunately, faculty at San Francisco State have not been silent in the face of such bullying, harassment, and incitement to violence. The Jewish Studies Department, the College of Ethnic Studies, and SF State’s faculty union the California Faculty Association, have issued statements clearly condemning those posters. Numerous SF State professors have signed this petition in support of Prof. Abdulhadi and students facing these attacks. Earlier statements that called on President Wong to uphold the agreement with An-Najah National University and stand by Dr. Abdulhadi were issued by the Middle East Studies Association, California Scholars for Academic Freedom, Jewish Voice for Peace, and National Students for Justice in Palestine.

We join these groups and call on SF State to meet all the demands outlined in the faculty petition mentioned above. These include:

Publicly and unambiguously defend:

1) the academic freedom and the intellectual reputation of our colleague Prof. Abdulhadi, by making a public statement that clears her name of the vicious and absolutely unfounded smear attacks against her, and by doing so to protect the intellectual integrity of SF State and all who work there;

2) the right of free speech of Palestinian students, faculty, and staff, and all advocates for justice in/for Palestine, against the current bullying, harassment and intimidation attacks suffered by members of our community

and, to publicly and unambiguously condemn all forms of hate speech, including anti-Arab racism, anti-Semitism, and Islamophobia, and to take all the necessary actions to stop hate speech on your campus.

These demands are crucial to the principles shared among us as educators.

Sincerely,
UAW 2865 Joint Council

(PDF)

Share : Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on GooglePlusShare on PinterestShare on Linkedin



Search