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Friday, November 18, 2011

Occupy Detroit supports National Day of Action with a march

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Occupy Detroit movement with hundreds of supporters converged on September 18th on the 2nd Avenue Bridge above I-94 in and shut down traffic for hours, calling attention to the need for good jobs in the city.

The protest came on the heels of a Tuesday, November 16th address by Mayor Dave Bing (D), where the Mayor stated over 2000 city employees will be laid off, unless unions quickly agree to cuts of an additional 20% in wages and benefits above the 10% negotiated in the last contract.

Facing insolvency, if the unions don’t agree to the cuts, Bing stated Emergency Manager could be appointed by Governor Rick Snyder (R) as soon as the beginning of next year.

After a financial report by accounting group Ernest and Young reviled on Monday, September 15th, Bing stated during his address that Detroit will run out of money by April and faces a $45-million cash shortfall by the end of April 2013.

Cuts to Detroit’s unionized workforce, announced by Mayor Bing would include the elimination of furlough days for all city employees, including public safety workers would receive an across-the-board 10% pay cut, along with a 10% increase in employee health care coverage contributions. Other changes include enacting pension reforms by reducing excess payouts and impose new work rules that will reduce overtime costs.

If an Emergency Manager is appointed, they could eliminate all unionized contracts, sell off city assets including land and contract nearly all city services out to privatized corporations.

Thursday’s protests supporting keeping livable wage employment in city government called by the Good Job Now and local minsters. The protest is also in support of the Occupy movement's National Day of Action, which included other activities around the country.

Among the ministers taking part is the Rev. D. Alexander Bullock of Greater St. Matthews Church, Charles Williams, Anthony Johnson, William Revely, Maurice Rudds and Cheryl Williams.

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