Blog Post

"Why are so many of your @CUNY colleagues dying?"

"Why are so many of your @CUNY colleagues dying?"

"Why are so many of your @CUNY colleagues dying?"

For those not on Twitter, I have cut-and-pasted this Twitter thread as a blog.

1-"Why are so many of your @CUNY colleagues dying?" This is the question I'm being asked since an @insidehighered article reported on 38+ faculty and staff COVID deaths. No one has even ventured to count how many of our 275,000 students have passed #CUNYStrong


2-Why? Because before NY Pause, we were in classrooms teaching brave, brilliant @CUNY students, almost of whom work while they go to school. 40% have family incomes under 20K a year. They work at the risky "essential jobs" that kept affluent New Yorkers safe #CUNYStrong


3-That gracious young Black woman behind the plexiglass at your local pharmacy on the Upper East Side usually works after her classes at Hunter, uses the library there because there's no wifi at home, takes the MTA to her apt in Bronx where she lives with her parents, grandparents, and siblings. #CUNYStrong


4-She might be studying to be a pharmacist (one of the lucky ones with a retail job that might actually help her after she graduates) or an accountant or an English teacher. Like many

@CUNYstudents, she will move from the lowest 20% of income to top 20%--a miracle! #CUNYStrong


5-Less than 1% of Hunter students are from economic “One Percent." Compare that to 40 of U.S. private schools that have more students from the top 1% than from the bottom 60%. @CUNY

is a miracle of income mobility. While US billionaires made $565 billion extra in wealth since pandemic, CUNY risked their lives and kept NY functioning #CUNYStrong


6-It is literally true that @CUNY students, staff, and faculty have died while keeping NY running and keeping affluent New Yorkers safe--Instacart deliveries, food and pharmacy, and, disproportionately, health care workers on the front lines #CUNYStrong.


7-This has been a terrible time for our students. POTUS's attacks on DACA students, ICE rounding up college students, visa and student loan changes, all disproportionately hurt @CUNY, founded 1847 to serve immigrants. Every New Yorker has relative who went to @CUNY. This is true for this brave, hardworking #CUNYSTrong generation too.

8-Now @NYGovCuomo and @NYCMayor are making decisions about budget and we hear@CUNY is on the chopping block, double or digit millions cut from a system already cut to the bone. Is this is how we repay heroes? #CUNYStrong

9-I hope brave youth out in the streets protesting against racial, income, health injustice will take up #CUNYStrong. After taking down monuments to racism and oppression, let's rise up fo @CUNY--a living, daily commitment to public higher education founded on social justice and equality.

10- That's all I have to say today.  Today, I am mourning yet another colleague who has died. Today I am talking to another student whose parents are desperately ill. Essential workers. Essential CUNY.  Thank you @CUNY for giving so much to NY during this crisis.   I hope New Yorker does not let you down.  #CUNYStrong





Photo Credit: Gotham Gazette, 2016


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