10 Arrested for Protesting on Behalf of Striking Janitors [ABC6]

Columbus police officers arrest Kenyon College professor Edward Schortman after he and other demonstrators staged a sit-in inside the lobby of the Fifth Third Center on E. State Street. [Dispatch]

Police have arrested ten people who chanted inside a Downtown building to support striking janitors. The protesters knew they would be trespassing when they entered the lobby of the Fifth Third Bank Building on Wednesday according to police. They were arrested after chanting inside the building for 15 minutes. The demonstration was organized to show support for a group of janitors who work at two Downtown buildings who walked off the job earlier this week after their union engaged in a year-long attempt to negotiate a new contract. Service Employees International Union (SCIU) leaders claim they have met stern resistance as they have worked to strike a new deal, which they believe should include the creation of more full time positions. “Employees have been harassed, intimidated, and even threatened at work for being involved in union activity around our campaign to get a fair contract for janitors,” union member Tyler French said. Union leaders say they stopped negotiating with cleaning service provider ABM two weeks ago because of company officials’ desire to cut the weekly hours of several employees. None of those arrested Wednesday are janitors. All were cited and released after they were taken into custody.

Updated: Wednesday, October 16 2013, 08:18 PM EDT COLUMBUS (Ken Hines)

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