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Announcement :: Labor : Race
Racism at Harvard
28 Oct 2009
Rally for Ravi Raj!
Thurs. 10/29, 12 noon
1737 Cambridge St (aka CGIS Knafel Building)
Cambridge MA

Read on for the details of Ravi's case.
Ravi Raj is a now-former employee at Harvard's Institute for Quantitative Social Science (IQSS). Beginning in 2007, Ravi endured disgusting racial slurs and having his Indian accent ridiculed on the job. He complained to many responsible administrators, with the result that his office was taken away, his work was subjected to extra scrutiny, and he received mediocre evaluations despite superb productivity and credentials. Ravi, a member of the Harvard Union of Clerical and Technical Workers, turned to the union for help, only to face retaliatory discipline from management.

Ravi has been confronted at work and threatened by a stranger, hours before a planned meeting with administrators to address racial discrimination. He has experienced anonymous telephone harassment. Ravi has faced creepy, unusual surveillance with a supervisor being spotted taking pictures of Ravi's friend's car, which was parked near Ravi's workplace. Throughout Ravi has provided his usual excellent IT desktop support. His work output was recently shown to be among the best in his unit, below only the department manager's level of production. He gets effusive compliments from clients all the time. Despite this, on August 20, Ravi was threatened in writing with termination, supposedly for poor performance! His job is now on the line because he has dared to speak out against racial epithets and discrimination.

Ravi has filed charges with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD). He has refused to be intimidated, even now as he faces being fired. Ravi supports two children who are pursuing higher education, and his father, who is an invalid.
Almost exactly two months after filing a lawsuit at the Mass. Commission Against Discrimination, Ravi was fired on flimsy pretexts last Thursday. For reporting sickening racist taunts from his supervisor, Ravi received retaliatory discipline, anonymous threats, and telephone harassment. His office was taken away, his work denigrated, and less-qualified people were promoted over his head. Just before firing him, Ravi's boss wrote to all his co-workers, spreading false and damaging suggestions about Ravi, and urging his colleagues to report him for misconduct. Senior Harvard managers knew all about these ongoing efforts to create a hostile work environment, but Ravi was terminated anyway.

Thurs. 10/29, 12 noon
1737 Cambridge St (aka CGIS Knafel Building)
Cambridge MA

Please join workers, students and anti-racist activists as we stand up for Ravi! We will demonstrate right in front of his former workplace, ten minutes or less from the Harvard MBTA station (walk down Mass. Ave. towards Central Square, bear left on Harvard St., left on Prescott St., two blocks to the rally).

Together we can strike an important blow in defense of a worker who stood up to discrimination on the job!

This work is in the public domain.
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