Local 47 officers among 43 arrested in the largest civil disobedience action in the mega-chain’s history
Surrounded by about 100 police officers in riot gear and a helicopter circling above, more than 50 Walmart workers and supporters were arrested in downtown Los Angeles the night of Nov. 7 as they sat in the street protesting the corporation’s low-wage poverty policies.
Brandishing bright-blue Local 47 activist T-shirts, more than a dozen members joined a crowd of about 500 including labor supporters, Walmart workers, and clergy and participated in the demonstration. Those who refused police orders to clear the street after their permit expired were arrested without incident.
Among those who refused to disperse were Local 47 Vice President John Acosta, Secretary/Treasurer Gary Lasley and other labor leaders and activists, including LA County Fed Executive Secretary Maria Elena Durazo.
The action was enhanced by live music performed by Local 47 band Los Jornaleros Del Norte (Day Laborers of the North) led by Pablo Alvarado, who also serves as director of the National Day Laborer Organizing Network.