Homework Question on Miami Janitors’ Strike
Reading (Also including the file I uploaded)
- Comment on the role of students, faculty, clergy, elected officials, and community activists in the Miami janitors’ union organizing drive and strike. What tactics or actions did you find the most effective and the least effective?
- What do you view as the lessons of the janitors’ campaign for other movements for workers’ rights?
- Do you see any parallels to the Memphis sanitation strike?
- Your posts must demonstrate that you’ve read and reflected upon the readings and video.
Homework Answer on Miami Janitors’ Strike
The Social employees International Union (SEIU) reached out to the students through STAND (Stand Toward a New Democracy), a group formed by undergraduates to instill a culture of activism among the students. The STAND group was at the moment trying to campaign against sweatshops and the institution of fair trade (Si Se Puede). In an effort to assist SIEU to advocate for better pay and working conditions for MU janitors, the students under STAND got trained on strategies from their counterparts in Harvard and Georgetown.
By the time the campaign got underway, STAND had 300 hundred willing participant students and they had gathered 800 signatures petitioning for the improving of the workers conditions and pay(Albright 67).The faculty had suggested four years previously for the increment of the wages of the workers only for MU president to resist it. The faculty members were supportive of the strike and went as far as holding classes in alternative avenues to avoid breaching the picket line of the demonstrators (Albright 68).
The role of the clergy was very significant in that the local priest was the one to symbolically inaugurate the strike during Ash Wednesday. The community of around MU was supportive of the strikes and were in favor of the majorly immigrant workers having their wages upped plus the provision of medical cover by UNICCO. The elected person that graced the occasion was John Edwards, who joined them when they were in hunger strike (Si Se Puede).