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New Students for a Democratic Society to Host 17th Annual National Convention in Chicago

By Chrisley Carpio

Chicago, IL – On October 14 and 15, dozens of New Students for a Democratic Society chapters and affiliates will be convening at the University of Illinois Chicago for their annual convention.

SDS took up a national campaign to save ethnic studies, women and gender's studies, faculty union rights, diversity programs, and more all year long.

After Tampa Bay SDS protesters were arrested and charged with felonies for protesting DeSantis in March 2023, SDS also took up a national campaign of “Drop the Charges on the Tampa 5!”

“This has been a year of truly heroic struggle all over this country and SDS has been on the front lines, ” Liz Rathburn said, from University of Illinois Chicago SDS, who is hosting the conference. “From Denver SDS winning the fight to demilitarize their campus police, to the Tampa 5 mobilizing hundreds of people all over the country to fight Republican attacks on the right to protest, there are a lot of exciting victories to celebrate and many ongoing fights to learn from at this year’s convention.”

SDS is inviting students and youth from all across the U.S. to attend, whether you have been fighting or want to learn how, and says in a statement:

“Our chapters, members, and friends across the campus movements will be traveling in from around the country to say, ‘Students Defend Education, Unions Strike Back!’

“We will host panels discussing how student activists are on the frontlines in the fight to defend ethnic studies, diversity programs, women's and genders studies, and cultural groups. We will feature students and staff undergoing political repression, whether they are fighting felony charges for protesting or facing firing from colleges and universities. We will include speakers from unions across campuses, hearing from faculty, staff and more fighters in the labor movement.

“Speakers so far include Aaron Krall, president of the UIC United Faculty; Gia Davila, a member of the Tampa 5 SDS members who protested Governor Ron DeSantis on March 6 is now facing 5 to 10 years in prison; Dr. Scott Heath from Loyola University of New Orleans, the director of the African and African American Studies programs, and one of their few tenure-track Black professors, who was recently fired; and more!

“SDS is looking to spread the fighting spirit of students from coast to coast, like a burning fire to light the way. We aim to not only protect our schools, but to win real victories that will improve campus life for all. And we are determined to grow the ranks of new generations of young people who are dedicated to fighting for a better society, on campus and off.

“Join us for our national convention and get involved with the student movement by joining Students for a Democratic Society!”

Please register to attend ASAP at this link.

#ChicagoIL #SDS #UIC #StudentMovement