Northeastern University workers strike protests Trump’s policies
Boston, MA – Food service workers at Northeastern University launched a one-day strike on Jan. 20, the day of Donald Trump’s inauguration as president. A majority of the 375 workers employed in the university’s dining halls joined in the work stoppage to protest Trump’s policy proposals.
Shortly before noon, groups of Northeastern students filed into campus dining halls with signs expressing support for workers, immigrants rights, and denouncing Donald Trump. At noon, students began chanting in support of the workers as they walked away from their work stations and off of the job. Many students had walked out of classes as well.
The Northeastern strikers marched to the Boston Common, where they joined demonstrations throughout the afternoon and evening. The overwhelming majority of the Northeastern food service workforce is made up of immigrant and oppressed nationality workers. Throughout the day, striking workers expressed their desire to show the strength and unity of immigrant workers. Striker Angela Bello told the crowd of protesters in the Common that she wanted to send a message that “immigrant workers are here to stay” and that “together we will move mountains.”
The Northeastern workers are members of UNITE HERE Local 26, the same union that led a 22-day strike of food service workers at Harvard University last October. These strikes are a hopeful sign of growing militancy from some sectors of the labor movement.
The Northeastern workers were not the only ones to hold a political strike in protest of the inauguration. Bay Area Longshore workers union, ILWU Local 10, stopped work for the day, as did University of California graduate students represented by UAW Local 2865. In addition, subcontracted janitors who clean Home Depot stores in Minnesota engaged in a one-day strike.