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Candlelight vigil held to support Alex Brower's hunger strike for MPS Substitute Teacher healthcare

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- An MPS substitute teacher is in week three of a hunger strike as he fights for healthcare benefits.

After 19 days of not eating, Alex Brower stood in front of his fellow substitute teachers on Tuesday evening to rally them to his cause.

"With each day that goes by, I am more disappointed that the members of the board are willing to deny substitute teachers a quality healthcare plan," said Alex Brower, MTEA Substitute Teacher President.

Brower has sat outside the administration building every day since he began his protest. He says he hasn't worked in that time so he can focus on what he and other substitute teachers are asking for - healthcare benefits.

To make it happen, the school district would have to amend its budget, something the board has a chance to do later in the week.

Brower says providing the benefits would cost $3 million, a small percentage of the total budget.

He says he'll continue his protest as long as it takes until the subs win their victory, no matter the physical health problems. 

"I want to end this hunger strike and have a modest meal to start off with because I'm very hungry and there's a lot of suffering that I'm going through but yes I am unwavering," said Brower.

A spokesman says the school district does not have a response to Brower's hunger strike.

The board meets Thursday.

Stay with CBS 58 News for more information on this developing story. 

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