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CLAP anticipates response to report

Amanda Michaels | Wednesday, March 29, 2006

After presenting a report on the living wage to University officials on March 8, members of the Campus Labor Action Project (CLAP) will get to hear the administration’s response in a meeting scheduled for Friday – appropriately, the end of Notre Dame’s Week of Action.

CLAP lead organizer Kamaria Porter said the meeting, which includes representatives from student government as well as CLAP members, is the first official feedback the group will receive from administrators since distributing the report asking for the institution of living wage at Notre Dame.

Porter said Executive Vice President John Affleck-Graves, Associate Vice President for Human Resources Bob McQuade, Executive Assistant to the President Frances Shavers and possibly University President Father John Jenkins were expected to attend the meeting.

As defined by the report, a living wage is “the hourly rate of income that a worker in a specific area must make in a 40-hour workweek to support a family of four.”

Porter said CLAP hopes it comes out of the semester – if not Friday’s meeting – with the creation of a joint task force made up of students, campus workers, administrators and potentially alumni.

“[The task force] could bring together the scholarly minds in theology and economics, the administrators who deal with budgeting, the students who genuinely care and have been researching this for quite awhile, the workers who are affected by this and who do not currently have a voice and the alumni who are invested in what happens at this University,” Porter said.

Harvard University instated a similar joint task force to support their campus living wage movement, on which Porter said CLAP modeled their idea. Notre Dame’s task force would work to finding a way to implement the living wage while still maintaining an “effective and efficient university,” Porter said.

Porter said she doesn’t know what will happen at Friday’s meeting but said CLAP will remain optimistic and open-minded.

“CLAP has done a lot of talking up to this point, so now we’re ready to listen,” she said.

As part of the Week of Action, today is also CLAP Day. The group will work to raise awareness of its cause and encourage students to sign a living wage petition, Porter said. She said the petition currently has approximately 600 signatures.