Thursday, April 26, 2007

Report Back from Our 1-day Fast

On Thursday April 26, 2007, 83 students and staff fasted for 24 hours in support of security guards' struggle for fair wages and working conditions at Harvard. Around lunchtime, about 50 of the fasters and their supporters congregated outside the President's Office in Massachussetts Hall in Harvard Yard. We stood with empty plates while representatives from the Student Labor Action Movement, the Harvard Dems, Students Taking on Poverty, the Association of Black Harvard Women, the Black Men's Forum and the Black Students Association delivered a second letter that explained the fast and reiterated the demands of the coalition. When the group representatives were denied a meeting with President Bok, students sat down outside of Mass. Hall to offer him an opportunity to come outside and address the entire assembly.

Meanwhile, Najeeb Hussein, a security guard at the Law School, came to offer encouraging words of solidarity from his fellow guards. He also thanked the students for their support and presented the fasters with a beautiful bouquet of flowers, which was distributed amongst the students. Before the sit-in dispersed, each student left his or her empty plate and flower in front of Mass. Hall as a reminder to President Bok of their commitment to this issue and an assertion that security guards will not be ignored.

The fasters gathered at midnight to share a meal and plan for the longer fasts and larger actions to come.

again a huge thanks to all of our fasters!

Alyssa Aguilera, Amanda Shapiro, Amy Ng, Anh-Khoa Tran, Ariel Fox, Audrey White, Austin Guest, Benjamin Faber, Benjamin Landau-Beispiel, Brian Coyne, Brigit Helgen, C. Ché Salazar, Chiazotam Ekekezie, Chimaobi Amutah, Christian Garland, Christian Starling, Christopher Rucker, Claire Provost, Connie Chen, Daniela Joffe, David Chiles, Edith Chan, Elizabeth M. Doherty, Ellen Quigley, Ellora Derenoncourt, Emiliano Bourgois-Chacon, Erika Helgen, Eva Lam, Gabriela Pena, Gayatri Datar, Genevieve Butler, Geoff Carens, Harlan, Ingrid Maurice, Jacki Chou, Jacqueline Hairston, Jamila Martin, Javier Castro, Jenna Marie Mellor, Jenny Fauci, Jessica Luna, Jessica Ranucci, Jill Stockwell, Joanna Naples-Mitchell, Jocelyn Eastman, Joe Tartakoff, Jordan Ford, Jose Olivarez, Julie Shapiro, Katharine Loncke, Kaveri Rajaraman, Kaya Williams, Kelly Lee, Kyle A. Krahel, Lucy Mackinnon, Luke Messac, Marianne Eagan, Mary Thomas, Matt Basilico, Matthew Opitz, Maura Roosevelt, Max Drummey, Megan Shutzer, Michael Gould Wartofsky, Nathalie Galindo, Nworah Ayogu, Ohnmar Khin, Olivia Shabb, Pawanpreet K. Dhaliwal, Pia Dandiya, Rebecca Myerson, Riva Nathans, Sanjay Pinto, Sarah Godfrey, Sarah Ruberman, Senait Tesfai, Shanai Watson, Sharifah Holder, Shayak Sarkar, Shirley Lemus Hufstedler, Tatiana Chaterji, and Tess Ponce!