State Workers Protest Cuts

By: Sherene Tagharobi Email
By: Sherene Tagharobi Email

"Legislators get the gold mine, workers get the shaft," state employees chanted in frustration outside the Capitol building.

Governor Rick Snyder's budget proposal asks state employees for 180 million dollars in cuts, including some state jobs--jobs like the 300 he plans to eliminate from the Deparment of Human Services. That's where Jayne Vankirk has worked for five years.

"They can fire every state employee in Michigan, but you're not going to fix the budget cause you're not generating revenue," said Vankirk.

Vankirk says too much is being asked of too few. She says increasing the sales tax by one percent would more evenly distribute the burden.

"Everyone in the state of Michgian is responsible for this debt, not just state employees, not just the poor, not just kids trying to get an education," she added.

State workers rallied on the corner of Capitol and Allegan so legislators on their way to Governor Snyder's budget presentation would hear their message.

"Taking away from workers or asking them to give more does not create jobs," said Glenn Freeman, president of the Greater Lansing Labor Council AFL-CIO.

Ken moore, president, msea hit time
"Let's close up the corporate loopholes where some of the big money's at. Let's close those up so we can get back to a reasonable budget," said Ken Moore, president of the Michigan State Employees Association.

Moore says workers want to be part of the budget solution -- not a casualty in the process.


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