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As a Center committed to addressing poverty and inequality through teaching, research, and community collaboration, the UCSB Blum Center on Poverty, Inequality, and Democracy relies extensively on the labors of graduate student teaching assistants and associates, researchers, and postdoctoral scholars. These academic workers make everything we do possible, as they carry out the essential work of the University of California. They also have a right to just, fair, and adequate compensation and working conditions, to engage in collective bargaining through authorized union representatives, and to expect the University to bargain in good faith and otherwise follow fair labor practices. These are among the issues at stake in the UC system-wide strike that commenced on November 14, 2022, as authorized by the largest and most decisive strike authorization votes ever taken by Academic Workers in the US. There are 48,000 UAW-represented workers across the UC system.

Further information about the strike, academic worker demands, and ongoing negotiations can be found at https://www.fairucnow.org/. We urge the University to honor its stated commitment to equity by bargaining in good faith to reach a fair and just settlement that will enable academic workers to live in dignity, without being undermined by financial instability, while contributing to our collective endeavors as teachers, scholars, and community members. 

We are now recruiting graduate and undergraduate student assistants to join our team! Please visit Handshake for the full descriptions and to submit your application. The deadline to apply is Friday, December 9th @11:55pm PST.

In our Fall newsletter, we address the on-going UC-wide strike. We also welcome our new Assistant Director Dr. Kashia Arnold, our new Internship Coordinator and Lecturer Dr. Tristan Partridge, announce the recent Cooperative Economics Award recipients, and showcase recent PISJ Minor student capstone projects. Read the full newsletter here.

For students thinking about a Fall internship your first step is to confirm your intention to pursue an internship next quarter. To do so, you will need to complete the Minor Internship Preparation Form by Tuesday, October 25th at 5PM by using this link

 

Undergraduates are invited to apply for student research grants as part of our Cooperative Economics Initiative during the 2022 Fall Quarter. Cooperative economics encompasses a broad array of economic activity and collaborative endeavors. It is also the basis of a vast field of formally established cooperative enterprises. These are organizations owned and democratically controlled by their workers, consumers, or those who otherwise use the organization’s services. Cooperatives enable people to come together to meet their shared economic needs in ways that contribute to community and social well-being. There is a rich tradition of cooperative organizations in movements for racial and intersectional justice.

The Fall Quarter application deadline is November 18th, 2022. We will be awarding student grants in amounts of up to $1,000. 

Zoom information sessions and resources to help students learn more about engaging with a cooperative economics perspective are offered on Friday, Oct. 21st and Monday, November 7th

Click here to learn more.

The Blum Center is pleased to announce our 2022-23 Cooperative Economics Research Award recipients featuring UCSB faculty and students. Please follow this link for an overview of their research projects supported by this funding. 

In our Summer/Fall newsletter, we address how inflation exacerbates inequality in the US, discuss California's regional inequities with former Blum Center Equity Research Postdoctoral Scholar Isaac Hale, introduce Heather Deutsch of SBBIKE + Coast, and honor Labor Day. Read the full newsletter here.

Signed into law on June 28th, 1894, Labor Day is a federal holiday that honors workers in the United States for their achievements and struggles in contributing to the nation’s prosperity.  

Today, the Covid-19 pandemic has affected how Americans view their relationship with work and bolstered the demand for better workplace protections, work-life balance, and meaningful acknowledgement from employers. We are also witnessing growing support for workers pursuing better working conditions and higher pay. Union membership is on the rise at companies like Starbucks, Amazon, and Apple while nearly 70 percent of Americans ages 18 to 29 state they believe that unions are good for the nation. 

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