New School Occupation Enters Second Day
Dec 18, 2008 Contact: Chris Crews
Re: Updated - Occupation of New School University 740-591-4220
New School In Exile Occupation Grows, Moves Into Second Day
(NY)—Over 100 student from the New School University are moving into their second day of occupying the Graduate Faculty building on 65 5^th Avenue. The occupation began Wednesday night at approximately 7 pm. After occupying the building the students established a New School in Exile. Students are committed to occupying the building until our demands are met and are calling for more New School students, faculty, staff and supporters to come and join the occupation.
Letters of support have come in from across the country, as well as Puerto Rico and Mexico, and occupier numbers have continued to grow throughout the day. Shortly before noon the occupiers attempted to take a wing of the building and gain control of the side access door. The students were able to hold the hallway even with provocations from security, which included students being physically assaulted by a New School senior security official and thrown to the ground by others. NYPD was called in and forced their way through the side door, leading to the arrest of one occupier, but students were able to hold the hallway leading into the main cafeteria area where the occupation is located.
The occupiers demand the resignation of New School President Bob Kerrey, Executive Vice President James Murtha and Board of Trustee member Robert Millard; more institutional involvement and representation by students within university government; the creation of a university committee focused on socially responsible investing; and the redirecting of financial resources away from capital projects and towards improving student resources and space.
"I was really inspired by the striking Chicago workers at the Republic Window and Door factory two weeks ago," said New School student Tim Hearin, "and I'm humbled to be the next link in the chain of people taking matters into their own hands in the name of improving their living and working space."
The occupation is part of a larger movement of New School students who were involved in the recent protests at the Board of Directors meeting last Wednesday, and the protest at the closed-session faculty meeting with President Bob Kerrey this Tuesday.