Dear Faculty Colleagues,
As strong advocates for working families in the Bay Area, we know how much inequality exists within our community and how difficult it can be to survive in such an expensive area even under the best conditions. For our undocumented students and their families, it is even more difficult. Now with the novel Coronavirus and the resulting economic slowdown, we have seen firsthand through conversations with students and from the overwhelming response to resources that our undocumented students face even more barriers than before.
More than 20% of Californians are now unemployed, and undocumented students and their families are far less eligible for the limited resources that exist to support working families. For these reasons, AFT 1493 supports the work of faculty across the college and unions across the Bay Area to raise funds to support undocumented students.
As a union, we have donated $1,000 to the SMCCCD Foundation’s new Undocumented Student Fund. Last month Fund managers allocated $150,000 to 500+ students, divided equally. Beginning in Fall 2020, whatever donations are made to the Fund will be distributed to students identified by the District once per semester. We encourage individual faculty members, who feel they have the means, to donate to the Fund in any amount they choose.
The Undocumented Student Fund was not, however, allocated to ALL undocumented students in our District, as not all students choose to disclose their legal status to Financial Aid. Additional local fund accounts at each of our colleges can bridge this gap for students, who share their emergency needs with trusted Dream Center and Multicultural Center Staff. Additionally, these funds can be distributed at any time. We encourage you to consider donating to these alternate/local funds so every student who needs it can be helped.
- Cañada College: Changemakers Scholarship Fund & Program Fund
- College of San Mateo: Multi-Cultural & Dream Center Program Fund
- Skyline College: Dream Center Fund
To donate to any of these Funds on a recurring basis from your paycheck (pre-tax), use this form. Check the box for “Other,” then write in the Fund name in the blank space.
In times of hardship, it is most often regular people, like our faculty, who lead the way in providing real financial support to families in need. AFT 1493 stands with our faculty across the District to support the efforts to directly benefit our undocumented students.
AFT1493 Executive Committee,