November 20, 2013

Alderman Tom Tunney
44th Ward, City of Chicago
3223 N. Sheffield Ave
Chicago, IL, 60657

Chicago Zoning Board of Appeals
121 N LaSalle St #905
Chicago, IL 60602

Dear Alderman Tunney and the Chicago Zoning Board of Appeals:

We are writing this letter to express our support for the youth and homeless services located in your ward and the congregations that sponsor and/or house them. As members of the Graduate Employees Organization, we share the vision of a diverse, united North Side of Chicago where everyone has the opportunity to thrive.

We respect the efforts you have made, along with service providers, to encourage community dialogue and agreement. We want to support those efforts in any way possible.

At this point, we know that the issue of Broadway Youth Center’s use of space at Wellington UCC is at the forefront. Howard Brown Health Center and BYC have been community partners and provide a much needed service to young people struggling in our community and city. We value and support their work. Wellington UCC has been a pillar in the community for 103 years, and we support their right to meet their mission and values by housing BYC.

We want to assure you that many people in the community value these services and we encourage you to continue your strong support. Please feel free to contact us at 312-733-9641 or geo@uic-geo.net to discuss this further.

Sincerely,

The Steering Committee of the UIC Graduate Employees Organization

cc: Chicago Zoning Board of Appeals
cc: Alderman Tom Tunney
cc: Howard Brown Health Center

To: Indiana University Students, Staff, and Faculty

The UIC GEO stands in solidarity with the IU students, staff and faculty in their pursuit of fair and equal treatment under University guidelines. It has come to the attention of the UIC GEO that individuals at IU have come together to fight for educational justice, a struggle similar to that which we are currently enduring. UIC GEO is currently in its 11th month of bargaining for a new contract. Graduate Employees are currently paid a minimum of about $14,500, even though the administration estimates the cost of living is around $17,900. The University has over $300 million in unrestricted funds, yet will not even agree to an annual cost of living adjustment. We have recently passed an intent to strike vote, almost unanimously, and are now making plans for a strike.

The UIC GEO would like to applaud those at IU who work toward strengthening public education and its access, especially for students of color. We would also like to add that we are paying close attention to the administration’s response to movements on your campus. We find courage and strength in our struggle through your struggle with IU administration on your demands. Please know that we support
your upcoming strike.

In solidarity,
University of Illinois at Chicago Graduate Employee Organization