[UPDATE] 'Fighting For Florida's Future' Rally

[UPDATE] Tallahassee, Florida -- March 29, 2011 6:35pm

After a surprise visit at the Capitol, protesting members of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) marched across the street to join another rally in progress at the Leon County Courthouse.

The front lawn was overflowing with protesters.

Protesters chanted, "When they say cutbacks, we say fight back."

The protesters say they are fighting against proposed Florida legislation, and fighting for their futures.

FSU student Patrick Shephard, said, "I want to be a teacher. But, with the teacher Merit pay Bill and all the other attacks on teachers and the organizations that represent them, I don't know if I have that future in Florida anymore."

Several hundred people filled the Leon County Courthouse yard Tuesday.

The protesters say their focus is students, teachers, public workers, law enforcement officers, health care workers, families and children, which they say are the very people Governor Rick Scott's policy proposals work against.

Protester Maria Machin said, "You have the top making all this much money. But, the people below are just barely surviving. You can't feed any family on what people make, especially minimum wage."

Shartanay Smith is standing up for her mom and eight siblings.

She said, "If she lose her job then how are we going to eat? How are the bills going to get paid? So, we're out here rallying."

The international vice president of Amalgamated Transit Union, Gary Rauen, said, "This mass rally is about people and it's about making improvements in people's lives. None of those bills do that. They, as a matter of fact, just attack on the working class people in the State of Florida and we're opposed to it."

The MLK Foundation of Florida, among many other local organizations were in full force.

Different speakers addressed the crowd and lunch was served.

The protesters say they hope their "Fight for Florida's Future" really makes a difference.


[UPDATE] Tallahassee, Florida -- March 29, 2011 -- Noon --

More than one thousand people from across Florida fill the courthouse lawn in Leon County today. Protesters say they are fighting for Florida's Future.

Many held signs that said "Let's Work Together" as protesters gathered around the Leon County courthouse. People from across the state came together to focus on protecting population groups including students, teachers, public workers, and law enforcement officers.

Stay with WCTV for more on this story.


Tallahassee, Florida -- March 29, 2011 --

Leon County Commissioner Bill Proctor Release:

The MLK Foundation of Florida, Inc., invites you to the “Fighting For Florida’s Future” Rally on Tuesday, March 29, in front of the Leon County Courthouse, 301 South Monroe Street. The event will occur from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Lunch will be served from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The Rally’s purpose is to focus on protecting population groups including students, teachers, public workers, law enforcement officers, healthcare workers, families and children.

For more information, contact Regina Glee, Aide to Commissioner Bill Proctor, at (850) 606-5371 or GleeR@leoncountyfl.gov.

Stay with WCTV for more on this event.

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