Dear friends and colleagues,
AWDU is asking for everyone — students and non-students — to come out to Sather Gate TODAY (Monday) at 11:30am to demand our union count every vote. This may sound absurd, especially during finals week when we’re all stressed, but at this point we have to fight for our votes to be counted!
Here’s what happened:
Elections for UAW Local 2865 — representing 12,000 graduate student workers UC-wide — ended on Thursday afternoon. All ballot boxes were taken to UCLA to be counted on Friday. There were many challenges concerning the boxes, their seals etc, but on Saturday morning the elections committee decided to go on with the count and then deal with each challenge afterward, as according to our bylaws.
Halfway through the count on Saturday, it became possible that AWDU (the reform slate I’m affiliated with) had won the elections. Rather than continue the count, the chair of the elections committee decided that the elections were “partially certified” and that the more than 1,500 ballots from Berkeley and UCLA (nearly half of all ballots cast) will not counted till the next meeting in July.
To put this in perspective: This is as if, in the 2008 national elections, the Republicans had decided to not count the votes of California and Hawaii, and to let a Republican-controlled congress decide how to deal with those ballots later. Would you find such a process fair? I didn’t think so. Would you do something about it?!? Hell yeah!
We need YOUR help to make sure all votes are counted!
1. Gather for a rally TOMORROW at 11:30 at Sather Gate. Then we will march to the union office in downtown Berkeley to demand that our votes are counted (meet us there at 12:30 if you can’t make it to Sather — 2070 Allston Way). We really need everyone to come out to put the political pressure on!
2. Email the current UAW President Daraka Larimore-Hall firstname.lastname@example.org and demand that all the votes are counted! Please bcc me so we can keep track of how many emails are getting sent.
3. Tell your friends! Please forward this message far and wide — we need all the support we can get, from students and non-students alike!
Thank you to those of you who voted in this last election and showed your support in so many tremendous ways. In some terrible twist, if it hadn’t had been for all of your efforts, our current union leadership would not be acting so scared right now. But right now, this isn’t about which side will win or lose the elections — this is about upholding democracy and our right to vote. Please come out and show your support.
For background on the election, and what’s at stake, please see the following links:
Read more about AWDU here: http://www.awdu.org/about