Dear Members- please see below for the Joint Council‘s statement on Charlottesville. UAW 2865’s additional statements on events, positions, and information can be found on our website — http://www.uaw2865.org/
The Joint Coucil also voted to sign on to the Campus Anti-Fascist Network Solidarity with Charlottesville Statement.
UAW 2865 Santa Barbara (our campus unit) also made a statement regarding Charlottesville- which is available to read on this website.
UAW 2865: UC Student-Workers Union
Statement of Solidarity with Those Opposing Fascist Violence
The University of California Student-Worker Union UAW 2865–which represents 16,000 Teaching Assistants, Readers, and Tutors–strongly opposes the violence that occurred at the Unite the Right Rally on August 12, 2017 at University of Virginia, Charlottesville. This rally, organized by many groups of fascists and white supremacists, culminated in the devastating death of anti-fascist demonstrator Heather Heyer, the beating of Deandre Harris and the targeting of other Black anti-fascists, and bodily harm to dozens of others demonstrating against the spread of hate. We recognize that this was not the first act of deadly or brutal violence at the hands of white supremacists, and we mourn the loss and harm of our comrades in this deepening struggle.
Contrary to its stated message, we do not recognize the violence in Charlottesville as protected speech, a unity rally, or a peaceful gathering. Rather, it was premeditated — an event premised on organized violence executed by self-trained paramilitary that deployed fascist slogans, Nazi propaganda, and US-based white supremacist symbols and physical attacks against students, community members, and others who oppose their anti-democratic, violent practices. We consider the statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee, which was erected during the Jim Crow era, and any opposition to its removal, as embodiment of toxic power, dominance, and authority based in fascist, racial, and domestic terrorism. The terror in Charlottesville, and indeed what is happening internationally, stems from a long history of investment in white supremacy and its attendant fiction of racial purity. We condemn the anti-Black, racist, misogynist, anti-Semitic, homophobic, transphobic, ableist, Islamophobic, and xenophobic sentiments that anchor these hateful groups.
Further, we move in solidarity with the counter-protesters, unionists, students, and community members organizing against these forces and for a more democratic, just, and anti-oppressive world. As part of our work to fight for basic rights, we recognize the important roles that unions can and have played in anti-fascist, anti-racist, and anti-imperial struggles. In our own work, we acknowledge the interconnections between capitalist exploitation, policing and militarism, and racial violence. The task of building anti-racist worker power that resists these practices is and must be a central objective for our movement. As a member-led union across nine teaching campuses–San Diego, Irvine, Riverside, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Merced, Davis, Santa Cruz, and Berkeley–we strive to hold each other accountable to this collective labor as core to our work to create just working and living conditions, for ourselves and our communities.
As we shared in our union’s J20 Statement: “We are a broad and diverse union committed to social justice that works to unite and center the needs and demands of many communities, including immigrants, refugees, undocumented folks, workers, Muslims, Jews, poor people, indigenous folks, queer and trans folks, Black folks, Chicanx/Latinx folks, Asian and Pacific Islander folks, women, survivors of sexual violence, labor activists, people with disabilities, public education activists, civil rights activists, and many others. In these troubling times, we reiterate that an injury to one is an injury to us all.”
In this moment, we are reaching out to all of our members, particularly those who are targets of fascist and white supremacist violence, to affirm that you are valuable. As we move forward in our collective work to build a world free of oppression and hate, we also center the need to take care of ourselves and each other so that we may grow stronger together.
UAW 2865 Joint Council