Student Labor Action Coalition

Get Involved

Free Bucky

Weekly Meeting

SLAC meets every Tuesday at 5:30pm. See TITU for room location.

All meetings are open to everyone interested in learning more and getting involved. No previous experience or knowledge is required.

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Join the SLAC Facebook group.

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How do I get involved?

It's easy! The best way is to just come to one of our weekly meetings. We'll be happy to explain what we're talking about as we go along — don't be afraid to ask lots of questions!

If you'd like to find out more first, you can email us with questions. Or if you want to meet with one of us one-on-one, we'd be happy to arrange that as well.

Who is SLAC?

SLAC members at USAS conference SLAC members at the 2010 United Students Against Sweatshops National Conference
in Knoxville, TN, with members of of the SITRAJERZEESH union

SLAC members (or SLACkers) come from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences, but the one thing we all share is an interest in fighting for social justice here on our campus, in our community, and internationally wherever workers are struggling for their rights and need our support.

Whether you're an organizer or an artist, a writer or a singer, or if you're just a person who wants to make a difference, then you have a place in SLAC. We're driven by the work of committed students, so if there's a project you want to work on, chances are we can do it together.

What else (besides partying) are UW-Madison students great at?

Leading the way in producing college apparel outside of sweatshops!

In 2006, the University of Wisconsin-Madison was the first American university to agree, in principal, to support the Designated Suppliers Program—the best way to get collegiate apparel made in humane conditions. Did you know that human rights have been systematically violated for decades in the name of this University? UW continues to profit on apparel that is made at the expense of sweatshop workers.

Since the late 1990s, there has been a campaign to make University apparel sweat-free. In 1999, 54 students were arrested by riot police during a peaceful sit-in to establish a proper labor code of conduct and enforcement mechanism for brands producing UW goods. Flash forward to early 2006, when students packed Chancellor John Wiley's office and delivered an ultimatum for UW to join the DSP. It has, and many colleges are following in our footsteps, including now the entire University of California system!

The Student Labor Action Coalition works to empower those who are exploited by the brands and Universities that profit from sweatshop labor. With your help, we can make our University a responsible actor in the apparel market, and create conditions in which workers can organize and improve their lives. Let's make sure together, as we head into the early years of our sweat-free agreement, that University officials don't buckle under the pressure of their corporate buddies from Adidas, Champion, and so forth.

Side note: SLAC is affiliated with United Students Against Sweatshops (USAS). Chapters at colleges all over the US and Canada are working to confront exploitation and oppression wherever it rears its head. USAS has even sent some our members to places like China, Bangladesh, and El Salvador to support and learn from workers struggling for justice in their factories.

Demanding on-campus jobs that actually help pay outrageous tuition bills!

Many students prefer to pay for their tuition (and other life necessities) by getting on-campus jobs. Whether it be food service, office work, or campus cleaning, many of us rely upon the University of Wisconsin to help us make ends meet. In addition to us, many older people hold down jobs to support their families. For years the University has hired these people to do full-time work but at limited-term pay, and disguising these workers as "Limited-term employees." The abuses of such workers are long and tiresome, but when it comes down to it, many students cannot pay their tuition with what the University pays them and many people cannot support their families if their "limited" employment goes on for years without a full-time promotion!

In the past several years, we've put initiatives on the ASM ballots to require the University to pay its LTEs and its student employees a living wage of $10.23 hour. Each time, students voted Yes to a living wage, but the Administration continued to fight us. After a long campaign, we finally got our living wage. This year, hundreds of LTEs will be able to join the campus labor union and thousands more will get over ten dollars an hour. Recently, the student government (ASM) has followed the instructions of the referendum and voted to recommend $10.23 for students too.

But the UW Administration is poised to oppose us once again. So, jump on board and join the fight for our living wage. The more students join, the closer we are to victory!