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University of Wisconsin ends Nike contract

The University of Wisconsin is ending its apparel licensing agreement with Nike because of concerns about displaced workers from factories used by the company in Honduras, Chancellor Biddy Martin told UW's Labor Licensing Policy Committee on April 9, according to a news release.

After the factories Hugger de Honduras and Vision Tex closed in January 2009, Nike allegedly failed to pay its former laborers the over $2 million owed in required severances, the release stated. The university's Code of Conduct, which details required labor practices and conditions, holds Nike responsible for its subcontractors though it does not own the factories.

Brown, like UW, is a member of the Workers Rights Consortium, whose mission is to "combat sweatshops and protect the rights of workers who sew apparel and make other products sold in the United States," according to its Web site. The Brown Student Labor Alliance recently led a campaign focusing on the University's ties to Nike and the situation in Honduras, The Herald reported April 8.

College health plans inadequate, N.Y. AG says

Many colleges' student health plans fail to provide adequate coverage, New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said in a release Thursday.

"Many of the sponsored health care plans looked at during our investigation leave students at risk while providing massive profits for insurance companies," he said in the release. 

The American College Health Association found that 57 percent of colleges require that students have health insurance, mandating that students either purchase college-sponsored private plans or use comparable personal plans, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education. 

In letters that Cuomo sent to colleges, he encouraged them to offer plans that include coverage for prescription drugs. He wrote that schools should avoid plans that impose annual caps and deny coverage to students with pre-existing conditions, according to the Chronicle.

UC professor's tenure challenged after sit-in

A University of California professor's tenure is in jeopardy after he staged a "virtual sit-in" opposing budget cuts and tuition increases throughout the UC system, according to Inside Higher Ed.

During the sit-in — organized by Ricardo Dominguez, associate professor of visual arts at the University of California at San Diego — 400 faculty and students simultaneously logged into the Office of the President Web site, overwhelming the system, according to an April 6 San Diego Union-Tribune article. The Web site included a message that claimed that the president's office had no transparency, the newspaper reported.

"I wanted to alert the UC Office of the President to the growing concern and critique of its policies," Dominguez told the Union-Tribune. 

The school is now investigating Dominquez for a "distributed denial-of-service attack," Micha Cardenas, a visual arts lecturer at UCSD, told Inside Higher Ed.

Dominguez is also being investigated for his Transborder Immigrant Tool. The tool uses cell phones with a location tracking feature to give people crossing the border from Mexico information about water supplies and border patrols, the Union-Tribune reported.



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