UCLA labor disputes lead to LMU being selected as new host
By Sam Catanzaro
The sixth and final Democratic primary debate initially planned to take place at UCLA’s Royce Hall, will now be held at Loyola Marymount University (LMU) the Democratic National Committee and LMU have announced.
“We welcome the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates to campus, continuing LMU’s long-standing tradition of rigorous inquiry, debate, and civic engagement. As a nationally renowned, highly ranked university in the Jesuit and Marymount traditions, LMU is a destination for world leaders whose ideas confront humankind’s most challenging issues. Together, we seek to create the world we want to live in,” said LMU President Timothy Law Snyder, Ph.D.,
The change of venues stems from labor disputes between AFSCME Local 3299, a member of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees union and the University of California, Los Angeles.
“In response to concerns raised by the local organized labor community in Los Angeles, we have asked our media partners to seek an alternative site for the December debate. We will be in touch with more information when it is available,” the DNC wrote in an email to Democratic candidates participating in the debate.
“With regret, we have agreed to step aside as the site of the debate rather than become a potential distraction during this vitally important time in our country’s history,” said the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs in a statement.
AFSCME Local 3299 represents more than 10,000 service and patient care employees in the UC system and is amid a three-year boycott.
“What we’re doing is asking for the candidates who are coming to UCLA’s campus to honor the three-year boycott that we’ve had in place for any speaker attending any event on any of the University of California campuses to stand in solidarity with the workers and essentially to not lend their name and credibility to the university that’s treating workers like this,” wrote Liz Perlman, union’s executive director, in a Facebook post.
PBS NewsHour and POLITICO are co-hosting the debate which will take place on December 19 and air live on PBS.