Glover may boycott UC-Berkeley speech

May 1, 2007 at 1:27 PM
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BERKELEY, Calif., May 1 (UPI) -- Actor Danny Glover said he won't speak at the University of California-Berkeley graduation unless the university settles a pay dispute with custodians.

Glover, 60, could join a long list of politicians and community activists who have boycotted several UC campuses over the matter, the Oakland (Calif.) Tribune said Tuesday.

"Because of my relationship with unions, I felt it was imperative that I support (the custodians)," Glover, a long-time union supporter, told the newspaper.

UC-Berkeley and custodians have been at odds for 18 months. Custodians with five years' work experience earn $12 an hour at the university while custodians with equal experience working at a Peralta Community College District campus earn $18.30 an hour, said the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 3299, which represents about 1,000 UC Berkeley service employees, including custodians.

"If UC does not fix this problem, I will join the boycott. As the richest public university in America, it is wrong that UC would choose to pay its custodians poverty wages," Glover said.

If Glover does cancel, campus spokeswoman Marie Felde said it wouldn't have much time to find a replacement speaker for next week, "which is disappointing to students and families."

Topics: Danny Glover
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