May 3, 2010

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UUPers, students stand up for Southampton


UUPer Heather McAdam from Stony Brook’s Southampton campus shakes hands with Sen. Ken LaValle during a meeting in Albany addressing the union’s concerns over the decision to virtually shutter the Southampton campus. Fellow Southampton unionists Stephanie Wade and Darren Johnson also made the four-hour trip from Long Island to meet with LaValle and other state lawmakers.

Nearly 100 Southampton students joined about 25 UUP members in advocacy visits to legislators on April 27 urging them to take action to keep the campus open.

The UUP advocates warned that the sudden decision by Stony Brook’s administration to close the campus offered a taste of what would happen if the so-called Public Higher Education Empowerment and Innovation Act were approved. Stony Brook Chapter President Arty Shertzer said the Act would leave such decisions solely up to SUNY and remove such authority from the Legislature.

In addition to their efforts to help Southampton and defeat the Act, the union advocates also urged lawmakers to restore $152 million in SUNY funding cut in the Executive Budget and add nearly $75 million to the state subsidy for SUNY hospitals to cover mandatory costs.

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