A coalition of Milwaukee-area labor unions in a statement Wednesday criticized recent protests against a lockdown of public life that’s meant to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
In a statement on Wednesday, the Milwaukee Area Labor Council — made up of about two dozen labor organizations in Milwaukee, Washington and Ozaukee counties — said Gov. Tony Evers’ extension of his stay-at-home order until late May was an appropriate step to combat the outbreak of COVID-19 that’s still spreading in Wisconsin.
Protesters in recent days have rallied against the state’s so-called safer-at-home order, and plan another demonstration at the Wisconsin State Capitol on Friday.
“The members of the Milwaukee Area Labor Council are speaking up because we find the so-called ‘freedom’ protests in Wisconsin extremely upsetting,” according to the statement. “This ‘liberty’ protesters are seeking, to get a haircut or go to a bar, is not worth the lives of our friends, our co-workers, our health care providers.”
Much of Wisconsin’s construction industry continues to work through the outbreak and is exempt from Evers’ executive orders that have forced the shutdown of restaurants, schools, event venues and other places where large groups tend to gather.