Office of News and Information
Johns Hopkins University
3003 N. Charles Street, Suite 100
Baltimore, Maryland 21218-3843
Phone: (410) 516-7160 | Fax (410) 516-5251
March 16, 2000
MEDIA CONTACT: Dennis O'Shea
Garland Hall Sit-In Ends
A group of student protestors who have occupied an
administration building lobby and reception area today signed an
agreement with the
Johns Hopkins Institutions and ended the sit-in.
Members of the Student-Labor Action Coalition ended their
protest in Garland Hall and said they would clean up the area and
leave the building by 5 p.m. The Homewood campus undergraduate
admissions office will resume its normal use of the lobby as its
In the agreement, Johns Hopkins formalized its previous
commitment to the principle that "all workers should be able to
live in dignity and support themselves and their families." It
also explicitly recognized that "compensation is critical to the
well-being of such workers."
Hopkins also committed to accelerating its progress "toward
implementing this principle." A year ago, the university and
Johns Hopkins Health System announced that all direct career
employees of the institutions and all employees of on-campus
contractors would be paid no less than $7.75 an hour--$2.60 more
than the current federal minimum wage--by no later than July
2002. All direct employees of the institutions are now already at
that level or above it, and the lowest-paid on-campus contractor
employees now make $6 and will make $6.50 beginning July 1.
Hopkins also agreed to broaden future discussions by forming
a committee to discuss the problem of poverty, especially in East
Baltimore, where many Hopkins employees live. The committee will
advise Hopkins on ways to improve the economic health of the
community. Hopkins said the committee's deliberations will
include discussion of compensation issues.
University President William R.
Brody, who was out of town at the time of the signing, said
he was pleased with the agreement and the end of the sit-in.
"Members of SLAC have continued to raise serious and
important issues," Brody said.
"Hopkins has had--and still has--differences with SLAC over the
specifics of how we should address those issues. But I believe
that the ground on which we differ is actually much smaller than
the ground on which we agree. We believe that fair compensation
of our employees is an important element in their quality of
life and the standard of living in our city and region.
"I believe this agreement, and the formation of a committee
to seriously study innovative approaches to the problem of urban
poverty, give us the opportunity to work closely together to
expand our areas of agreement and ensure that we are doing right
by our workforce," Brody said.
When the sit-in began, SLAC demanded that Johns Hopkins
immediately agree to a "Living Wage," a periodically adjusted
wage sufficient to allow every employee to support four people
above the federal poverty threshold. The university and Health
System said they could not commit to meeting an unpredictable
moving target when--especially in an era of managed care and
Medicare cost constraints--they cannot accurately predict their
own financial position for future years.
[Follow this link for more information on the
living wage issue at
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