Seven people--including four janitors--were arrested yesterday during a peaceful civil disobedience action in the lobby of a premier downtown Houston office building where janitors are on strike. Four of the "Freedom Flyers," as they call themselves since they traveled from across the country to stand united with the Houston workers, have experience working as janitors and three are mothers.
"I know the fear that so many of my co-workers have to live with. The fear that you could lose your job for speaking up," said Josefina Carrasco, 57, a janitor from Chicago who participated in civil disobedience today. "Janitors in Houston can't risk arrest without risking their jobs too. I can, so I will. Because I have a good job I was able to send my four kids to college, I was able to build a middle class life for my family, janitors here in Houston deserve the same chance." Read more from the Freedom Flyers here.
After the non-violent civil disobedience, janitors marched to City Hall where Archbishop Emeritus Joseph Fiorenza addressed the Houston City Council in support of striking Houston janitors. The Archbishop called on business leaders to do their part to support fair wages for janitors and good jobs for Houston.
To learn more about why the Houston janitors are fighting for a fair contract, check out this moving piece on Marketplace. People from across the nation are supporting our fight, view the latest updates below.