University of Illinois graduate student workers go on strike

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CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – Graduate student workers at the University of Illinois have gone on strike after 11 months of unsuccessful talks with administrators on a new contract.

Picket lines of chanting students started Monday morning on the campus in Urbana-Champaign. The (Champaign) News-Gazette reports some undergraduate students had their classes canceled, while others were moved to buildings away from the picketing.

University spokeswoman Robin Kaler said administrators didn’t immediately know how many classes had been canceled.

Graduate Employees Organization co-president Gus Wood says daylong talks Sunday with administrators resulted in “absolutely no movement.” The group represents about 2,700 graduate students who teach many undergraduate classes.

The group says it want to protect tuition waivers provided to many graduate students. The university says it has made “generous and serious proposals” to address those concerns.

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