March 1st, 2012, Day of Action and General Assembly: Strike, Occupy, Escalate

Students, workers, and community members in California have called for a day of action on March 1st, which the New York City All Students Assembly has endorsed. Those involved in the CUNY General Assembly also wish to support this call, but believe that it needs to have an explicit goal of escalating tactics–in particular, through strikes, occupations, and other activity directed at shutting down and transforming our universities and workplaces. Therefore, we call on the CUNY community to participate in the March 1st day of action and, in addition, to come together that evening for a General Assembly in order to further discuss, plan, and coordinate these actions.

On November 21st, 2011, the CUNY community attempted to peacefully protest the Board of Trustees; in response we were attacked with batons, some of us were arrested, and our demands were ignored. This is not the first time that the administration, with help from the NYPD, has attacked us for speaking out against a fundamentally oppressive system. The CUNY community has a long history of struggle–whether it be protesting against budget cuts and tuition increases, protesting against wars and the use of the school ranking system for the draft, or demanding open admissions to educate all the people of New York, including people of color–and the administration has tried to silence us every time. We look to these struggles for strength, but also recognize that we need to continue to be creative and engage in new forms of action.

It is in light of this political situation, the continued assault on an already broken educational system, and the ineffectiveness of our previous protest attempts that we call for this day of action in order to escalate our tactics and collectively take back control over our schools and lives.

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