CFA holds meeting to plan long-term budget fight
December 9, 2008 2:17 PM
About 30 of SF State's student, faculty and staff united in a California Faculty Association meeting today that may serve as a prelude for a large-scale action to protest the budget.
The two-hour meeting, held in the Cesar Chavez Student Center, allowed students, faculty and staff to voice concerns, opinions and facts regarding the budget crisis in the educational world. Shwan Zandi, a senior anthropology major, spoke on behalf of the students at the event.
"It's a really grim situation," said Zandi, who not only goes to school full time, but works 32 hours per week in order to support himself.
Students, faculty and staff from all over the state are organizing a march to Sacramento on March 16 along with the community colleges of the state to bring awareness of the severity of the budget cuts. Tens of thousands are hoped to rally for the event.
"We can't keep our heads in the sand, we need to face it," CFA President Ramon Castlelblanch said about the budget cuts to the CSU system.
He suggested that it costs so much to get to Sacramento with travel expenses, so in a time of budget crisis they should protest locally.
"The students feel we need to focus on the Bay Area," Zandi said. "We need to come up from the bottom."
Zandi said that all of the higher education institutes from the Bay Area gather at the San Francisco Civic Center to bring the awareness.
"When Barack Obama is inaugurated we can [protest at Civic Center] and say, 'where's our bailout?'," Zandi said.
Suggestions brought forth by staff and faculty members to fix the budget crisis included raising state revenue, lowering the state prison budget and using the funds for higher education and getting a federal bailout.
The CFA is currently trying to carry out the resolution of the "New Deal for the New Millennium for Higher Education." This proposal to the federal government from CFA asks for a $70 billion bailout that would greatly reduce the strain on higher education across the country.
For more information visit www.calfac.org.
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