I don’t want to see a strike here at Yale. As much as I complain about the dining halls every morning, I don’t want to give up my two eggs, half-full glass of skim milk, and two English muffins for Au Bon Pain and Doodle breakfasts. I don’t want to e-mail my professors asking them to move my classes out of certain buildings so that I can avoid crossing picket lines. Even more so, I don’t want to have to choose between skipping class and crossing those picket lines because neither choice is a good one.
But more than all of that, I don’t want the approximately 70 percent (according to union estimates) of Yale’s workers who need to work a second job just to feed their families to have to continue living like that. I realize that the pay raise on the negotiating table right now won’t solve that problem, and I know that Yale can afford more.
I don’t believe Yale is responsible for everything wrong in New Haven. But one in four New Haven residents is a Yale employee, and the lack of good union jobs doesn’t mean that just the workers in my dining hall suffer; the whole city suffers, since Yale jobs constitute a significant part of the New Haven economy.
I want to tell the University with the clear language of public protest that I support the unions and that I want the University to work out an equitable contract now, before a strike forces them to. Because as much as I don’t want to see a strike, I would support one.
Judy Miller is a senior in Berkeley College.