Originally Posted Online: Nov. 23, 2012, 12:03 pm
Last Updated: Nov. 24, 2012, 12:40 am

Davenport protesters moved from Wal-Mart property

Comment on this story

More photos from this shoot
Photo: Todd Welvaert
Scott Noyd, a representative with the UFCW Local 431 in Davenport, asks Davenport police officers if a group including members of the Sisters of Humility, Quad City Interfaith, and Progressive Action for the Common Good can hold a prayer vigil at the the Davenport Wal-Mart on West Kimberly Road on Friday, Nov. 23, 2012. Officers escorted the group off the Wal-Mart property to a grassy area on a frontage road to the property. The event was part of a nationwide effort to organize Wal-Mart employees and protest the corporation's management tactics that protestors say include 'exploitation of state and federal funded programs (such as food stamps and Medicaid) to support their underpaid workforce.'

DAVENPORT - A nationally organized campaign protesting wages and health-care benefits for Wal-Mart employees met a roadblock Friday morning here in the form of Davenport police officers and store management.

About 75 people from the Sisters of Humility, the Quad City Federation of Labor, the Diocese of Davenport, Quad City Interfaith and Progressive Action for the Common Good planned to conduct a prayer vigil for workers at the Davenport Wal-Mart on West Kimberly Road.

But according to police officers, Wal-Mart management didn't want the group on Wal-Mart property. The officers told the protesters they had to leave the parking lot, which led to some testy exchanges between some of the protesters and police.

'They threatened to arrest me if I walked toward the store,' said Ed Blough, a Davenport city worker and member of Teamsters Local 235. 'I told him (an officer), 'I was just shopping.''

The protesters moved to a berm area to conduct their prayer.