USC Students for Justice in Palestine

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USC president threatens, but anti-sweatshop students will not be silenced

Posted by uscsjp on April 16, 2007

Editor’s Note: We applaud these students for their principled stand, their sacrifice and courage. Meeting these students via Internet and reading about the action they’ve taken to rid their university of profiting from the misery of others has been inspiring. Please consider supporting them by writing to the USC president at the bottom of this article submitted by the student activists. – Les Blough, Editor


 

University of Southern California’s Administration Threatens Students Demanding Fair Treatment for Apparel Workers

The clothes bearing the USC name are made in sweatshops, and the university silences students when they propose that the university take serious efforts to address this. Eight years ago, students at USC first informed the university that the clothes bearing our university name were produced in factories where workers did not earn enough to support themselves, let alone a family. Sexual harassment was commonplace, workers were forced to work overtime without compensation, and they were fired simply for standing up for their rights. For eight years, students have demanded that the university use its power to support workers attempting to change these conditions, and for eight years the president of USC, Steven Sample, has not only refused to act, but has refused to even discuss the matter with students.

13 students occupy President Samples’ office while 1500 across the country protest university profiteering on sweat shop clothing.

It is for this reason that, on Tuesday, 13 students representing the Student Coalition Against Labor Exploitation, an affiliate of United Students Against Sweatshops, occupied President Sample’s office and demanded that the university finally listen to its students and take a stand in support of workers’ rights. Our demands were simple:

1. that USC join 168 other universities, and the City of Los Angeles, in affiliating with the Worker Rights Consortium (WRC), an organization responsible for monitoring the conditions in which university clothes are made.

2. that it follow the lead of the 31 other colleges that have also adopted the Designated Suppliers Program (DSP), which would ensure that these clothes are produced in factories where workers earn enough to support a family and have the freedom to form a union without losing their jobs.

Unfortunately, instead of distinguishing this university as a leader, President Sample chose to do exactly the opposite. (continued)

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One Response to “USC president threatens, but anti-sweatshop students will not be silenced”

  1. Livette said

    Nice blog!

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