From the March-April 2011 issue of News & Letters:
Los Angeles–On Feb. 14, Valentine’s Day, over 700 city workers gathered for one hour at City Hall under the theme “I love LA” to protest cuts in city services and layoffs, with more furloughs and deferred raises. A speaker said that the $588 million giveback from deferred raises and furloughs is an attack on workers.
Workers carried picket signs with the names and acronyms of their respective departments. They included libraries, sanitation, public transportation, parks and recreation and housing. Workers responsible for child care, senior programs, gardeners/caretakers, animal shelters, water safety monitoring, city car and truck maintenance, sewer maintenance, airport airway maintenance, traffic operators all protested. Unions represented included SEIU and AFSCME.
A 911 operator said there are plans for an additional 15 to 25 furlough days for each shift: daytime, night and early morning. Many departments are already under some furlough days, which is equivalent to a pay cut in today’s climate of rising prices.
A few days later, tens of thousands protested Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s drive to take away public workers’ rights to unions.