Public employees fight back as Gov. Snyder pushes drastic cuts to pay for huge corporate special interest tax breaks

LANSING – Today Progress Michigan and the We Are the People coalition launched, a new website that showcases the personal stories of Michigan’s teachers, firefighters and other public sector workers.

With Lansing politicians pushing a budget that would cut $180 million in wages and benefits from public workers to pay for a $1.8 billion tax break for corporate special interests, the interactive website gives workers a forum to push back against the attacks by showing Michiganders how vital their work is to Michigan’s continued economic recovery.

Currently, the site features 34 video testimonials from workers across the state, including: firefighters, teachers, public health workers, environmental inspectors, food service employees, sanitation workers and many others.

“We are the people who keep our communities safe, teach our kids, and make Michigan a great place to live and work,” said Amy Lipset, a transportation planner with the Department of Transportation. “Unfortunately, hard working public employees like us who have already sacrificed to move our state forward are being asked to pay for huge tax breaks for corporate special interests. It’s time for the politicians to stop attacking public workers, start working together, and start creating jobs to get our economy back on track.”

To upload a testimonial, public workers should visit and click the “Submit a Video” button at the top of the screen, and then follow the instructions. Videos can be submitted via web cam, mobile phone, or digital camcorder. Testimonials should be approximately 30 seconds long, and can then be shared with family, friends and co-workers via Facebook and Twitter.

“It’s clear that Lansing politicians have been spending more time listening to the powerful CEOs who helped them get elected than the people of Michigan,” said David Holtz, Progress Michigan executive director. “This new website will give public workers a forum to share their stories with lawmakers and make sure their voices are heard.”

Two examples of video testimonials on the website include:

Bill Ruhf, Forensic Scientist:

George Heath, Transportation Service Center:

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