Before the coronavirus-induced withdrawal from campus, several Drexel University students held a “die-in” in front of a student eatery to show what the future holds for “all of society.”
According to The Triangle, the Urban Eatery played host on March 11 to members of the Drexel Socialist Club, Drexel Students for Bernie Sanders, and Fossil Free Drexel. The groups performed the die-in for a whole 60 seconds to “symbolize” the alleged damage done by food service companies like the Aramark Corporation.
The Triangle says Aramark “caused a student uproar” due to its “inability to provide healthier, greener and larger variety of food items” for college students.
Die-in participants’ bodies were outlined in chalk to “play on the historical police method.” One spectator joined in at “the very end” of the demonstration (which means he must have hit the ground for all of five seconds).
Phil Porter, the Vice President of Grassroots Organizing for “Drexel For Bernie Sanders,” said “their utensil selection and the things they use to serve food is not sustainable, even if with [Drexel’s] competitors, Drexel is one of the last using Aramark as a food provider.” He further explains that the contract between Drexel and Aramark was made in 2016, and that the university is one of the last in Philadelphia still using Aramark as its main food provider. …
“Right now we are trying to send a message that this is our lives, this is our climate, this is our ecology and you can’t throw that away because it’s cheaper to sell one type of food over another. We’re trying to get them to be more sustainable in their meal practices and if not we are going to move forwards and try to get Drexel to not renew the contract [with Aramark],” Porter states.
Aramark contends its “inclusion of sustainability” is via a non-profit food distributor which provides a “bi-weekly Farm Stand” for students, and that Drexelites can use their meal plans for such. The protesters dispute this.
Porter said the activists’ demonstration was a “very serious thing because in the next 10 years we really might be feeling the hurt of all this.”
Drexel closed all campus facilities on March 20. It extended its spring break by one week, and all classes will be held remotely once the semester resumes.
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