May 31, 2010
On May 24, dozens of workers – almost everyone in the building – marched a protest picket line in front of the St. Clair County office of Michigan’s Department of Human Services (DHS). This was the fifth local protest by DHS workers in five months.
The ranks of state employees have already been cut to the bone. DHS caseworkers’ average load is now 700 cases per worker.
The Michigan economy is so bad that one in four Michigan residents now gets some form of public assistance. DHS workers are expected to handle them all.
What do state government officials propose? They have the same “solution” for every problem: cut the budget, cut workers’ pay and benefits, don’t hire more workers.
State of Michigan workers refuse to keep quiet about problems getting worse for themselves and for clients they serve. They demand that politicians come up with some money.
Throughout history, politicians have always “found” money when they felt a determined and organized population refusing to accept more ridiculous cuts.
One of the picket signs at this demonstration said it all: “We are the front line, not the bottom line!”