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Protesters near Northeastern block Green Line tracks

Northeastern University students and others blocked the T tracks in a protest over the school’s policy toward adjunct faculty.David L. Ryan/Globe Staff

Service on the Green Line's E branch was briefly disrupted Tuesday after Northeastern University students and others blocked the tracks in a protest about the school's policy toward adjunct faculty, officials said.

Service on the line was suspended between the Prudential and Heath Street stops in both directions, according to the MBTA, "due to demonstrators blocking the tracks." Officials announced that service had resumed just before 2:30 p.m.

A group of students organized the demonstration to draw attention to their concerns about the treatment of part-time faculty, who protesters believe are not compensated fairly. Part-time faculty members voted last year to unionize, and critics say they are not satisfied with the pace of negotiations with Northeastern.


Alissa Zimmer, a third-year student who is part of the Empower Adjunct Community Coalition that organized the protest, said students in the coalition are most concerned with the lack of job security or office space for adjuncts.

"We are constantly aware of what they're going through, what their struggles are," she said. "Their working conditions are our learning conditions."

Students in the coalition have tried to voice frustrations through other peaceful protests, Zimmer said, but nothing has worked, so they planned to block the tracks.

"We know that a 20-minute delay in a commute is worth it when we're talking about people's daily lives and the fact that they don't make a livable wage," Zimmer said.

In a statement distributed by Northeastern, university officials said they "continue to bargain in good faith with part-time faculty to reach an agreement that benefits our entire university community."

"Like any great university, Northeastern is committed to the free and open exchange of ideas," the statement said. "We respect the organizing rights of members of our community."

The protesters also said they were joined Tuesday by fast-food workers demonstrating as part of a national call for the minimum wage to rise to $15.


These protesters were also joined by fast-food workers calling for a $15 minimum wage.David L. Ryan/Globe Staff/Globe Staff

David L. Ryan of the Globe staff contributed to this report. Andy Rosen can be reached at andrew.rosen@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @andyrosen. Felicia Gans can be reached at felicia.gans@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @FeliciaGans.