Letters to the Editors

    CALPIRG needs pledges to fight cause

    The California Student Public Interest Research Group is the largest social service organization on the UCSD campus. We work on campus and statewide to protect the environment, fight against hunger and homelessness, get students out to vote and reduce the price of textbooks. Just last year we were able to help pass the strongest clean-water law in the country, raise $20,000 for the homeless and help pass a bill in the California Legislature to reduce the price of textbooks.

    Students founded CALPIRG in the 1970s because they wanted to make a difference on important issues. Because of their energy, idealism and access to university resources, students have always been at the forefront of social change in our society, spearheading the civil rights, anti-war and environmental movements. However, students also lack things like money, expertise and continuity that make it difficult for them to spearhead the more complicated and sustained work it takes to pass a bill through the legislature or sue a water polluter in court.

    CALPIRG is successful because students pool their resources on campus and statewide so that we can hire experts to work with us — so that we can make a difference on campus, as well as at the state and national level.

    We’re able to do all of this because over 30,000 UC students, including 20 percent of UCSD students, have pledged to fund CALPIRG through a $5-per-quarter optional student activities fee.

    This week, a bunch of committed student activist volunteers will be asking UCSD students to pledge to support CALPIRG’s efforts. In order for any one student to be billed the CALPIRG fee on campus, 20 percent of students on the same campus must also agree to pay the CALPIRG fee. This is designed to ensure that when a student is considering pledging, they have a guarantee that their money will actually be pooled with the money of enough others to really make a difference.

    I hope that you are able to pledge this quarter and help us in our efforts to stand up for students and our rights.

    — Victor DeVore

    External Chair, CALPIRG

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