Comrade Tafadar Sourov, deputy chair of the Revolutionary Student Coordinating Committee, was arrested today along with professor members of the Professional Staff Congress in a civil disobedience to protest the budget cuts Governor Cuomo wants to impose on CUNY. CUNY is at a risk of being defunded by New York State, threatening the education of all the working class youth, Black, Latino, and other oppressed nationality students that attend the university. Tafadar and the professors were in front of the Cuomo’s office in Third Avenue to let the state government know that the students, professors, and workers of CUNY will not allow our school to come under attack by the neo-liberal interests that operate in the state government.
Cuomo, allied with the Republicans in the NY Senate, are proposing cuts to the CUNY budget which put the livelihoods of all those that attend CUNY in danger. Less funding for CUNY means less funding for academic departments, especially the ethnic and gender studies departments which are usually the first to be shut down. It means that the professors who have been working without a contract for over seven years will not be able to secure a fair contract inside a more precarious CUNY. Among the professors, adjuncts would be among the most affected sections because their lack of job security. But worse of all, less funding for CUNY could lead to across the board tuition increases that lock out most of the people in our communities from accessing school. These cuts are a racist attack against CUNY students and the communities of New York City.
CUNY does not belong to the neo-liberal interests that seek to defund and privatize education across the state. It does not belong to the politicians trying to using slander to hide their lack of concern for CUNY and its students. It does not belong to Cuomo and his nefarious program to destroy public education in the State of New York. CUNY belongs to the students, professors and worker that make CUNY what it is today. CUNY exists to serve the people of New York City. There is no other way but to fight together to preserve CUNY for the interests of our people.
We stand in solidarity the PSC and all those fighting to protect CUNY from this racist attack by the state legislature. We demand full funding for CUNY, tuition freeze and professor contracts now. This action was an example of the movement that needs to be built in CUNY: professors and students uniting to protect our common interests in the university. We compromise to work together with the PSC to make this movement a reality. We must all mobilize to protect our university and to fight for the CUNY that works for all the people of New York.
Full funding for CUNY!
Tuition freeze and contracts now!
Liberate CUNY for the people!