Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Living Wage Calls for GU Reforms

Correction Amended (February 2, 2005): The article “Living Wage Calls for GU Reforms” ( The Hoya , Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2005 , A1) failed to clarify that the living wage for a household in the Washington , D.C. metropolitan area of $14.93 per hour is based on the assumption that the household is drawing two full-time salaries.

More than 50 students and faculty members converged on Red Square and marched in front of Healy Hall Friday afternoon to protest the university’s employee wage policies.

Participants at the rally demanded that the university reconsider implementing a living-wage policy for its contracted workers, who are primarily maintenance and facilities staff.

“We are here today because Georgetown workers are being paid poverty wages.,” Jack Mahoney (COL ’08) said.

Georgetown currently pays its contracted wages at least $8.50 per hour under a policy enacted last semester by Spiros Dimolitsas, senior vice president and chief administrative officer.

According to the Living Wage Coalition, a new student organization meant to advocate living wages for contracted Georgetown employees, the lowest wage a worker can make to sustain a family of four in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area is $14.93 per hour.

Students were not alone in voicing their opposition to the current wage policy, as several professors expressed their support for the rallying students.

“The way we should judge a community, or country, or a neighborhood, is to expect that the least powerful are treated well and have a voice,” Pietra Rivoli, an associate professor in the MSB, said.

GUSA Vice President Luis Torres (COL ’05) offered words of encouragement to the protesting students on behalf of the student government.

“[GUSA President Kelley Hampton (SFS ’05)] and I always said from the beginning that the student administration supports . all of you, petitioning for this living wage campaign,” he said. “We think it’s fair. We think it’s appropriate. We think it’s the right thing to do.”

After hearing the speakers, the protestors moved to the front of Healy Hall.

Group members proceeded to affix a list of demands on the main entrance doors of Healy Hall. A DPS officer guarded the entrance, barring protestors from entering.

Despite the hindrance, several members of the rally managed to enter Healy Hall through another entrance and presented university officials with posters and banners expressing the sentiments of the Living Wage Coalition.

“I think the rally was very successful, I think we got our message out [and] I was excited to see so many faculty members there,” Mike Wilson (COL ’05) said. “This was our kick-off rally for a more public part of our campaign.. The workers on this campus aren’t going to be lifted out of poverty through good intentions of the administrative committees. They need action and we intend to force them to take action.”

The rally was sponsored by the Living Wage Coalition.

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