Saturday, January 27, 2007

The Coalition for Higher Tuition Returns

The WMU Living Wage Coalition is back.

Also a student group that has, on the behalf of contracted workers, been agitating for what it calls a "living wage'' for them may have been successful in getting the board to put the issue on an upcoming agenda.

The WMU Living Wage Campaign Coalition, has said WMU should require companies that contract with the university to pay workers $9.50 an hour with health-care benefits or $11.50 an hour without such benefits.

The issue surfaced almost three years ago when WMU outsourced several dozen custodians who work in residence halls as part of cost-cutting measures.

When the custodial contract is up for renewal this year "we ask that you do what is fair, do what is right, do what is moral ... adopt a living wage policy and require all companies who submit bids to pay their workers a wage that they can live off of,'' Tim Hurttgam, a WMU junior and WMU Living Wage Campaign Coalition organizer, told the board.
Increasing costs for the university will only increase costs for students. The coalition could better lobby for Western to sell off unneeded assets like the downtown property mentioned in the article.

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