Norton and Ellison rally with federal contractors who work at Union Station, the National Zoo and other D.C. sites. (Hannah Hess/CQ Roll Call)
Labor issues came to Capitol Hill Tuesday, as federal contractors protested wages at Union Station and members of Congress used the opportunity to discuss workers’ rights among contractors and employees in the legislative branch.
About 100 federal contractors who work minimum wage jobs at Union Station, Ronald Reagan National Airport, the National Zoo and the Pentagon marched through Columbus Circle on Tuesday morning waving picket signs and flags.
Halting the flow of taxis and tour buses at Union Station, they protested the White House’s executive order to increase hourly pay on new government contracts to $10.10 as “not enough” and demanded the right to unionize.
“These courageous workers have gone on strike nine times,” said Rev. Michael Livingston, national policy director and head of the Washington, D.C., office for Interfaith Worker Justice. The people waving white and blue flags behind his lectern were predominantly women, many dressed like Rosie the Riveter in red bandanas and starched blue shirts and holding the hands of toddlers who marched alongside their working moms. Full story