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Union Workers to Rally at Colorado Capitol

Photo courtesy of the Colorado Independent

Several hundred state employees are expected to descend on the state capitol at noon Tuesday for what organizers are billing as a rally in support of the Wisconsin union workers.

Organizers of the Colorado rally say Wisconsin is not an isolated event – but rather part of a coordinated attack on worker’s rights that they say is sweeping the nation.  With Colorado facing a projected $1 billion budget gap, state employees like Alex Acosta, a janitor at the University of Colorado at Boulder, are set to enter their third year of a pay freeze.

"I can’t believe it that this is going to continue to another year," Acosta said.  "That is going to be really hard for me and my family."

Acosta is worried about a proposed plan by Governor Hickenlooper that would require state employees increase retirement fund contributions by more than 4%.  Union leaders say that will amount to a pay cut. 

But Hickenlooper has argued workers in the private sector have endured equal if not worse cuts to their benefits during the economic downturn.

Kirk Siegler reports for NPR, based out of NPR West in California.