Daily Worker Testimony, February 29th

Chrissy* has been working at the University for less than ten years – but the whole time has been stressful.  She explained to the campaign “they don’t know how to treat you right.”  Most of her co-workers are stressed out, continuously discussing the amount of pay. People who live within the Charlottesville area and outside of the Charlottesville area discuss the same struggles. People, man or woman, black or white are all stressed out for the same reason. Why? Because the pay is horrible. The wage should be better, as the University has the ability seen in the size of it and its other projects and priorities.

But Chrissy lives paycheck to pay check like many of her employees and gets the lowest wage. It’s difficult to find other jobs, especially during this harsh economy and especially while supporting a family. But while supporting her family her children has to help her pay her bills – otherwise she would not be able to do it. There are opportunities for 2-3 hours of overtime, but it’s not worth it because the commute is so long and the pay isn’t enough of an incentive. Why doesn’t Chrissy speak out? After the last academic year, the campaign explains to Chrissy that the University released a “Freedom of Speech” statement protecting University workers rights to speak out. University administrators also told the Campaign that there would be a concerted effort to publicize this “Freedom of Speech” statement to employees. To Chrissy knowledge, there has been no effort by the University to publicize worker’s rights to speak out. Also when discussing with Chrissy about the “pay hike” from last summer, Chrissy explained that many of the people who have been working here longest did not receive the hike because of a loophole in the payment system

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