Three months ago, newly-appointed Yale Vice President for Finance and Administration John Pepper told the Cincinnati Post:

At this point in my life, I feel like I can contribute to a team and an institution that in many ways is like Procter & Gamble.

The Yale community got a better sense of just what that means when Pepper announced (Monday’s YDN still not on-line) the lay-offs of a hundred Yale clerical and technical and managing and professional employees. Yesterday, members of the Yale community came together to protest the University’s breach of faith and call for a better vision of the University:

“We will not let John Pepper strip away all that Yale can and will be in this community under the guise of some fabricated budget deficit,” [Laura] Smith said. “With or without you, John Pepper, we will build a future for Yale that we will all be proud of.”

…Smith called forward approximately 20 laid-off workers to take the stage at the rally. “It’s difficult to go out and start a new career,” Stanley Kobylanski, a 52-year-old laid-off telecommunications worker, said. “I’d like Yale to rescind the layoffs. Our major concern is the battle we wage with subcontracting and outsourcing our work.”
Pepper’s response:

“I believe in dialogue on these subjects,” Pepper said. “Unions are important organizing units and should be respected as such. But we are all part of the Yale family.”

Unfortunately, Pepper is yet to translate his stated belief in dialogue in real partnership with Yale’s workers of the sort John Stepp called for in the RAI Report. Meanwhile, despite what Wal-Mart and other union-busting firms may tell you, paternalism does not a family make.

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