Small Super Bowl protest for anti-union law

INDIANAPOLIS Sun Feb 5, 2012 6:13pm EST

Related Topics

INDIANAPOLIS (Reuters) - A small group of about 50 activists marched to Lucas Oil Stadium where the Super Bowl will be played later on Sunday to peacefully protest Indiana's new anti-union "right-to-work" law.

Indiana on Wednesday became the 23rd state in the nation and the first in the U.S. industrial heartland to adopt a law allowing workers to avoid paying union dues at unionized businesses.

Supporters led by Indiana's Republican Governor Mitch Daniels have said it was necessary to attract jobs to the state. Critics including Democrats and unions called it "union busting" and have said it would lead to lower wages.

The small group of protesters walked peacefully the five blocks from downtown Indianapolis to the stadium, although the demonstrators were heckled along the route by some of the people they passed.

"I think they need to get jobs," said Jeff Eichler, who was visiting Indianapolis from Baltimore, Maryland.

By mid-afternoon, the protest had reached the stadium, where security is tight ahead of Sunday's National Football League championship game between the New York Giants and New England Patriots. They dispersed into the growing crowds of football fans without incident.

The AFL-CIO, the largest U.S. labor federation, released a statement last week saying it did not "plan nor condone any attempts to disrupt the Super Bowl."

(Reporting by James Kelleher)

(Corrects name in fifth paragraph to Jeff from Jess)

FILED UNDER: