UCD Students take Mrak Hall (again!)

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DAVIS – Tuesday, November 24th in UC Davis, students entered the Mrak Hall administration building for a sit-in. Five days earlier on Thursday, 51 students were arrested inside the building during a prior sit-in (+1 outside). Again, students refused to exit during closing time (see video below).

(last update: 10:56pm, November 24th, 2009)

(image depicts Mark Yudof, president of the UC)

see their website for continuous updates: http://ouruniversity.wordpress.com/

UPDATE: see this post:

Tuesday, November 24, 6:22 p.m.
About 60-70 students are in Mrak now, it’s past “closing hours” and we were asked to leave by an administrator who identified himself as “Bob” at about 5:30. We’ve made a commitment to stay the night. Food, more instruments, and many new voices have arrived to keep this party going, we invite you to join us!

THE DOORS ARE STAYING OPEN.

Last Thursday police locked the doors of Mrak at 5 and no new students were let in after the building was “closed.” We are learning and tonight we’re leaving the doors open all night. It’s time for us to reclaim this space entirely, we’re here for the night and we’re not leaving.

There was rumor that the police had been called about 20 minutes ago but they have yet to show up. Administrators have attempted to pull a few students aside to discuss terms of leaving, staying, etc and have been told that any discussion must take place with the entire group.

More updates to come, for now, dance on UCD!

Tuesday, November 24, 6:38 p.m.

We’re beginning to talk through a potential list of demands.  The pizza’s here, yummmy.

Tuesday, November 24, 7:00 p.m

Janet Gong (Senior Associate Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs) and Lora Jo Bossio (interim assistant vice chancellor for enrollment and academic support services) are attempting to discuss with students our leaving the building.  We have made it clear that we will not be leaving.

Tuesday, November 24, 7:00 p.m

Police here. Attempting to close the doors. Students are keeping the doors open.

Gong and Bossio attempting to distract students with conversation while the doors were getting closed. We noticed and called them out.  Now students are keeping the doors open.

Tuesday, November 24, 7:13 p.m

Discussions of safety.  Students are confronting administration about the brutal treatment of students last week and on other campuses.  We are demanding that all police leave campus before we will have a discussion.  They are asking 10-15 minutes to regroup and then continue to discuss. They want us to come up with a time that we may leave.

“We can’t have a dialogue with you while the police surround the building, that’s not a dialogue, that’s a threat.”

Tuesday, November 24, 7:36 p.m

Distraction and lies! Administrators disappeared upstairs about 15 minutes ago.  Now they’ve been followed by two cops in riot gear.  What are they discussing up there?  We doubt that it’s their commitment to ongoing dialogue.  In preperation for conflict, some students have already sent their bags/ belongings to the co-ops on campus for safe keeping.  Chants of “Whose University” are cut short to practice:

“I do not consent to a search…

… I am going to remain silent and I want to speak to a lawyer.”

Let’s hear it for knowing your rights.

Students commit to refusing to identify their gender so we can’t de divided by the gender they assume we are and to declare we’re vegetarian in solidarity with those who are (last time we were in jail for over 12 hours and those who do not eat meat were not given a food option. Plus a cop threw a sandwich… I’m just sayin’)

Video: chanting, “you see UC student solidarity”

8:09pm – The administration is blocking the bathrooms.

8:37pm – Students are negotiating with 2 administrators and the chief of police. They are demanding an apology from the university for the treatment of one of the students that suffered police brutality last week. The students have been given two choices, either leave now or stay with the doors locked & police 100 yards away (meaning no one new can enter)

8:41pm – The students refuse the offer. The administrators are trying to get out of the room to talk more in secret. The administrators still will not allow students to use the bathrooms

8:44pm – The administration has refused to apologize for any brutality. The police chief has stated that she has only see one video from that night and has talked to the officers involved, but will not make a real investigation into what happened.

9:13pm – 150 students are committed to staying in the hall. 15+ “peace officers” are outside, but that’s not all of them. The students are keeping the doors open with a bike lock

10:04pm – Students in negotiations off and on, the numbers inside are ~100.

10:56pm – Success. The administration promises to lobby on behalf the charges being dropped. This is, however, only a partial success. We still need the fees dropped!

see letter from administration here.

videos from the inside here.

2 Responses to “UCD Students take Mrak Hall (again!)”

  1. Minh Says:

    Are you guys still inside? I’m a little worried that there hasn’t been a status update. How are you guys doing?

  2. Second Mrak Occupation at UC Davis is a Milestone « Student Activism Says:

    […] November 25, 2009 in Access to Higher Ed, Administration, Campus Protests, Police, Student Power, Tuition and Fees Last night students at UC Davis went back to Mrak Hall, where 52 people were arrested last Thursday, and launched the week’s eighth UC building occupation. […]

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