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For Immediate Release
September 18, 2019

UUP joins students in Climate Strike actions around New York

As students around the world begin a week of global climate action on Sept. 20, Dr. Frederick E. Kowal, president of United University Professions, pledged support by the union’s members, and called on them to join the student-led rallies, marches and workshops.

“As educators, we try to help our students build a foundation for their future,” Kowal said as the union geared up for the Climate Strike and Week of Action. “But what these students are doing is taking their future into their own hands, by building a foundation for the world in which they want to live—a world in which they can survive. It is essential that we encourage them and follow their example.”

UUP members expect to turn out in force with their students in Albany, New York City, Stony Brook and Oswego.

UUP has a strong record of supporting action on global warming and has worked with Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the State University of New York to create programs at its colleges and universities that provide training in green technologies. The union strongly backed Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s 2018 investment of $15 million in clean energy workforce development and training programs at SUNY.

UUP is a member of NY Renews, a coalition of more than 100 labor unions, environmental groups, and community and faith-based organizations dedicated to combining climate justice with the creation of good jobs. As part of this coalition, UUP applauded the passage of the New York State Climate and Community Protection Act, which the governor signed into law in July. The new law sets the goal of a carbon-neutral state economy by 2050.

“We know what the solutions are, and we have the means to implement them,” Kowal said. “UUP has joined the Climate Strikes Coalition and partners from around the world to activate thousands of people around the country who want real solutions to the climate crisis.”

“SUNY is the natural vehicle by which New York state can implement the Climate and Community Protection Act,” Kowal added. “SUNY is—and should be—a leader in environmental conservation. Our campuses are well positioned to help put this plan into action.”

“UUP stands ready to partner with SUNY, the governor and the Legislature to foster green-energy programs and to reach our goal of a carbon-neutral New York.”

UUP is the nation's largest higher education union, with more than 42,000 academic and professional faculty and retirees. UUP members work at 29 New York state-operated campuses, including SUNY’s public teaching hospitals and health science centers in Brooklyn, Long Island and Syracuse. It is an affiliate of NYSUT, the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association, and the AFL-CIO.


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