As part of PGSU’s ongoing effort to hear from fellow grad workers on their experiences with housing, and in light of the university’s Lake Campus plans for new graduate housing built and administrated by American Campus Communities, PGSU has put together a short (10-15 minute) housing inquiry for grad workers. (Linked here) The answers from this survey will help us better understand and build a movement around our needs as grad workers—whether we live in Princeton housing or not, on our own or with partners or children. We encourage you to fill it in and pass the survey on to your friends.
The only way to have a real say in our working and living conditions is through collective action — through forming a labor union. While we work towards legal recognition as a union, we still have the power of political and collective pressure, and that is what we intend to mobilize to demand affordable and accessible housing now and for the graduate workers who come after us. We’ve been working over the past weeks to gather testimonials from fellow grad workers in graduate housing and those living off-campus, and have been conducting research on American Campus Communities, the firm to which the university plans on renting the lands across Lake Carnegie. This firm will collect rents from us (at a profit), the university will profit off the land rents it collects from ACC, and there is as yet no guarantee as to the affordability of this housing for us, the tenants.
We believe rent for graduate housing should be tied to a percentage of our base stipend, in line with federal regulations for affordable housing, and that is what we will demand of our employer in the coming weeks.
Take the survey!