Public Employee Protests Continue Across the Region

Updated Sunday afternoon

Public employee protests continued across the region Sunday with more planned this week.

In Wisconsin, protesters moved inside the state capitol building on the seventh day of what is being called the “Battle of Madison.” Union members in Michigan, meanwhile, plan to rally in Lansing on Tuesday.

A winter storm caused protesters to move inside the capitol building Sunday, where they ringed the rotunda with signs, some toted by children whose teachers left classrooms last week to join the demonstrations. The Wisconsin State Journal has full coverage, including a photo gallery, here.

A rally in Madison on Saturday drew nearly

Protesters in Madison, WI
Photo: SEIU

70,000 people, the largest such gathering yet during a week of protests. Some people spent the night in the state capitol rotunda, according to the Associated Press.

Democratic state senators are still out of the state, many in Illinois, in order to avoid Wisconsin state troopers’ jurisdiction. On Sunday, Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican, urged them to return to debate his proposal to void collective bargaining rights for state employees.

Last month, Changing Gears reported on new governors in the region, including Wisconsin’s Scott Walker.

In Lansing, Mich., members of the United Auto Workers union plan to rally Tuesday morning at the Central United Methodist Church, near the capitol building.

What do you think of the protests? Are you a union member, or not? Tell us your views in the comments section.

3 Replies to “Public Employee Protests Continue Across the Region”

  1. The protests are what America needs right now, in order for unions not to loose their power and influence in America. I am not a union member, but if I were, I would believe it to be my duty to participate in the protests. What Gov. Walker has proposed is an “unconscionable” piece of legislation and it must be fought on whatever level it can be fought on.

  2. nobody is a union member except for public employees. Unions should be stronger in other manufacturing areas like China, where they have legitimate reason to protest working conditions. Here in the US, working conditions are mostly great because it increases productivity. Only if your an undocumented immigrant to you have legitimate reason to protest, but then, of course, you’d be deported if you protested. Unions are dead here, and public employees getting busted is probably a good thing because now they can take their talents elsewhere and not rely on public benefits. Working in the public sector should only be a temporary job. Trust me. Temporary public work will save the nation.

  3. What the 14 state senators did is very uncalled for, whatever your side on the fence. These actions only undermine our democracy. Wisconsin voted republican rule in both houses, and now we have unprescendented actions against our wheels of justice.
    Let me ask you this. The next time a huge debate like this happens, or perhaps slightly less volitile, will it be ok for a minority (especially if it was republicans) to just leave so there can be no progress?

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