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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Hundreds protested for several hours in downtown Pittsburgh this afternoon.

Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Tim Lawson

At one point, tensions ran high when Pittsburgh police officers showed up in riot gear.

The event began in Market Square at 3:00 p.m.

Then, the group marched down Grant Street and onto Liberty Avenue.

“We want to be at the table,” said Chrissy Carter of Black, Young, and Educated. “We want a table that’s made for us. We want people to step down from positions of power and include us.”

As protesters approached the end of Liberty Avenue, police with helmets and batons stood blocking Commonwealth Place.

Pittsburgh Public Safety tells KDKA those officers were dispatched after receiving word that protesters were headed for the Fort Pitt Bridge.

“For numerous safety reasons – primarily the safety of the protesters themselves – police sought to avoid that scenario,” a Pittsburgh Public Safety representative told KDKA. “Before police could get to the on-ramps, protesters approached them on Commonwealth.”

Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Tim Lawson

The issue led to a standoff between police and protesters, but the situation did not escalate past some initial shoving.

“We’re peacefully marching for our lives,” said Carter. “We’re pleading for you not to kill us anymore and you meet us with riot gear.”

For about a half hour, protesters chanted and spoke to officers.

Eventually, police retreated and allowed the group to turn around to return back up Liberty Avenue.

Pittsburgh Public Safety says there were no arrests made.

This is the second straight day tensions ran high between police and protesters in Pittsburgh.

Friday, police declared a small protest in uptown an unlawful assembly after protesters blocked streets.

In the final hour of the protest, demonstrators sat at Liberty Avenue and Stanwix Street before wrapping up in Market Square after 7 p.m.

Speakers asked for an even larger turnout for upcoming protests.

Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Tim Lawson

“It’s about a world that is possible and a world that is coming to fruition,” said Mia Sturbini of Black, Young, and Educated. “I think the fact that such a strong group showed up today is really a testament to that.”

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Tags: commonwealth place downtown pittsburgh george floyd protest local tv pittsburgh news pittsburgh police protests shelby cassesse liberty avenue

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Union Representing Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Journalists Votes To Strike

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s newsroom staff voted to authorize union leaders to call a strike at the paper.

The Newspaper Guild of Pittsburgh voted 88-31 to strike. Now the executive council of the local’s union, the NewsGuild, has to approve the authorization for the strike. After that, it would go to the Communications Workers of America’s president, who has the final say.

Two other Communications Workers of America unions at the newspaper — Pittsburgh Typographical Union #7 and Mailers Local M-22 — have both unanimously authorized a strike.

Newspaper Guild of PIttsburgh members overwhelmingly vote 88-31 to strike the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

— Newspaper Guild of Pittsburgh ???? (@PGNewsGuild) August 10, 2020

“We want nothing more than to negotiate a mutually agreed upon settlement,” said Newspaper Guild president Michael Fuoco in a statement. “Should the company refuse to rescind the illegal changes to our working conditions, return to the bargaining table and negotiate a fair contract for both sides, we are prepared to withhold our talent from the Post-Gazette, to effectively remove the newspaper’s heart and soul.”

It’s been a crazy three years at the Post-Gazette. They’ve faced embarrassing national headlines about employee-management relations, and at the same time, they won a Pulitzer.

For more than two centuries, the Post-Gazette has been a respected Pittsburgh newspaper. But recently, they’ve made national headlines following allegations of racism, harassment and unfair labor practices by management.

Fuoco told KDKA at the end of July they don’t want to go on strike.

“We’ve never wanted to go on strike,” he said. “We hope that by doing so, if we do, if the membership hopes to do that, then this will be a wake-up call to the company.”

The strike vote was prompted after the Post-Gazette declared an impasse in the negotiations and implemented parts of their final offer. The Post-Gazette, which partners with KDKA-TV, declined to talk on camera at the end of July, but released a statement.

The Post-Gazette said it has implemented certain portions of its final offer including wage increases totaling 8 percent over three years and said employees will now participate in the company’s insurance plans.

But Fuoco said the raise doesn’t nearly cover the pay cuts they’ve taken over the past 15 years or the increased costs of health insurance.

Stay with KDKA for the latest on this developing story.

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