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Ann Arbor, Michigan
Vol. CXVI, No. 52
62006 The Michigan Daily
Former swimmer and
assistant coach Eric
Namesnik suffers mortal
injuries in crash
By Nate Sandals
Daily Sports Writer
Suffering from injuries sustained in a car
accident last weekend, former Michigan
swimmer and assistant coach Eric Namesn-
ik was prounced brain dead at about 3 p.m.
yesterday at St. Joseph's Mercy Hospital in
Superior Township. He will be taken off life
support today after his organs are prepared
Namesnik made a name for himself as
both a swimmer and an assistant coach in
his 16 years at the University. He gained
tion at the 1992
and 1996 Olym-
pic games, where
he won two silver
dition took a turn
for the worse at
about 7 a.m. yes-
terday after he was
seriously injured in Namesnik
a traffic accident early Saturday morning,
according to former swim team captain Dan
Sgt. Brad Hill of the Ann Arbor Police
Department said there were over a dozen
cars involved in the pile-up, which occurred
distribution plants could
be hurt by University
cutting Coke contracts
By Neil Tambe
Daily Staff Reporter
In addition to drying the mouths of
Coke lovers across campus, the Univer-
sity's suspension of Coca-Cola products
will likely have an impact on regional
Responding to pressure from campus
activist groups that allege the company has
committed civil rights and environmental
injustices in India and Colombia, the Uni-
versity decided last month to temporarily
suspend its contracts with the company.
The University's supply of the beverage
is bottled at a plant in Detroit and distrib-
uted across Southeast Michigan by way of
a distribution center in Van Buren.
The University purchases over 80,000
cases of Coke products each year, accord-
ing to Percy Wells, spokesman for Michi-
gan's Coca-Cola bottling company.
The total yearly bill comes out to about
Wells said the decrease in sales result-
ing from the contract suspension will
have an immediate impact on the bot-
"The decision only affects Michigan
jobs, Michigan workers and local Michi-
gan families;" Wells said.
Gordie Johnston, a Coca-Cola truck
driver, said he believes jobs will be affect-
ed over the long term if the contract is not
"When (students) are at full swing, they
go through a lot of pop," he said.
Coke sells syrup to independent bot-
tling plants, which then produce and dis-
tribute the cola.
"Coca-Cola does not sell or distribute
anything in North America," Wells said.
"It's distributed by local bottlers."
Michigan's bottling company employs
about 2,000 people, 64 percent of whom
The local union,called Teamsters Local
337, boasts a membership of about 560.
Delivery workers are entirely union-
ized and the commission sales staff is
According to Wells, employees come
from all walks of life and include college
students, urbanites, blue-collar and white-
"Everyone needs a job, no matter what
position they are working in," he said.
In addition to bottlers working at the
plant, the loss of sales could affect every-
one from salaried salespeople, who make
$40,000 to $50,000 per year, to delivery
truck drivers earning about $19 per hour,
The reduction in sales would likely
affect drivers with less seniority first
because delivery routes are assigned
first to employees with seniority. Drivers
without products to deliver would be sent
home that day without full pay.
The University plans to resume its con-
tracts if the company agrees to an third-
party investigation in Colombia.
Coca-Cola officials argue that local-
ly-produced beverages are not linked to
the operations in India and Colombia.
A letter to the University from Coca-
Cola signed Dec. 19 said, "Banning
Coca-Cola products at the University of
Michigan will not affect the bottlers in
Colombia or India, which are distinctly
University Spokeswoman Julie Peter-
See COKE, Page 7
Coca-Cola truck driver Gordie Johnston says Michigan workers could be affected by the University
suspending its contracts with the soft-drink giant.
on I-94 near Jackson when
0 such a huge
It's hard to
- Tom Dolan,
cles lost con-
trol in the
was at the
when he was
A number of
MSA supports raise
ONE FISH, TWO FISH
in minimum wage
been an out-
pouring of support from
Assembly also agrees to
fund panel to discuss issues
and viewpoints from both
sides with students
By Joelie Dodge
Daily Staff Reporter
Building on its precedent of addressing
major state and national issues, The Michi-
gan Student Assembly approved a resolution
yesterday to support the concept of rasing the
mininumwage in Michigan to $6.85..
The assembly also agreed to plan and fund
an unbiased panel event for students about
the wage issue.
Members of the Raise the Wage Student
Coalition, a student group advocating an
increase in the state's minimum wage, attended
last night's MSA meeting wearing green cloth-
ing to show their size and strength as they pro-
moted the resolution.
The panel will be composed of experts from
both sides of the issue. Coalition members said
the panel's purpose will be to educate students
about the pros and cons of increasing the mini-
A swimming alumni group called the
"Michigan Old Guard" sent an e-mail to
many former Michigan swimmers alert-
ing them of the situation and suggesting
ways for them to support the family.
One of Namesnik's most famous races
took place against fellow Wolverine
Tom Dolan in the 400-meter individual
medley at the 1996 summer Olympics in
Dolan finished first, beating Namesn-
ik by a mere .35 seconds.
Though Dolan and Namesnik were often
See NAMESNIK, Page 7
The coalition believes MSA's response is
important to its success.
"MSA support is important because they
are the voice of the students," said Ryan
Bates, who represented one of the groups in
the coalition, Students Organizing for Labor
and Economic Equality. "It is their role as
a body to inform students, but also they are
who we elect to stand up for what is right in
the interest of the students."
At the meeting, MSA General Counsel
Russ Garber objected MSA addressing large
issues such as increasing the minimum wage.
"This is something that isn't under MSA's
jurisdiction," he said. "If five people care
about something it's a student issue. These are
major national and international issues. It is
not an issue MSA should be dealing with in
The coalition argues that MSA support is
a vital ally of the student body to promote the
issues student groups support.
"We see it as a compelling social justice
issue and these sentiments are shared by many
students in the student body," said Pam Baker,
coalition member and chair of Students for
See WAGE, Page 7
Rackham student Ron Oldfield displays two of his cichild fish. He was the first stu-
dent outside of the Medical School to be awarded the Jody C. Ungerlelder Award,
which honors humane treatment of animals In research.
Dingell addresses A2
What sucks? LSA-SG wants to know
New program promises
to address campus problems
that students complain about
By Ekjyot SalnI
Daily Staff Reporter
Ever find yourself saying "this sucks"
when registering for classes, choosing a
was how credit brackets are used to assign
class registration appointments. Expansion
of Entr6e Plus locations and an increase in
Wolverine Access hours also came near
the top of the list.
"We have the resources and responsibility
to address the issues most important to stu-
dents rather than pursue our personal agen-
das," LSA-SG President Yahkind said.
Students can e-mail their complaints
Calls for change
Most common complaints
about the University:
Class registration appointment
Too few Entree Plus locations
troubled state economy
during speech, which is part
of annual dialogue series
By Bo He
Daily Staff Reporter
economic issues facing the state and addressed
questions ranging from the current budget deficit
to job outsourcing.
One of the key issues heavily affecting the
national economy is the ongoing war in Iraq. The
war is costing the United States more than $1.5
billion every week, according to the National
With the final tab expected to easily top $2