MARTA union joins ASO musicians in rally

ATLANTA -- Union members from MARTA joined Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in a protest at the Woodruff Arts Center in Atlanta on Thursday.

ASO musicians have been on a lockout since Sept. 6 after a contract dispute with management. All performances and concerts have been cancelled until at least Nov. 8.

Hundreds of Atlanta Symphony Orchestra supporters and other union members showed up Thursday for the rally in Midtown.

The protestors say they are fighting for workers to get treated fairly even when the economy changes.

MARTA employees, members of the Atlanta Clergy and symphony musicians want changes. They say they are standing in solidarity wanting equality and justice in the workplace.

Gloria Jones has been a string bass player with the orchestra for 30 years. She says she's seen the changes over the years but it especially hit hard when she recently lost her health insurance

"We went through lock out two years ago and a lot of us felt like issues weren't settled, and we were right," Jones said.

The demonstrators were at Marta Arts Center station throughout the afternoon today.

The musicians say they are hoping there is a resolution soon and that they will be back at work by November 8th before the holiday season

ASO management and musicians have been in mediation throughout the week.

MARTA spokesperson Lyle Harris issued a statement on Thursday saying:

"MARTA is committed to working with the Union to forge a new labor agreement that ensures meaningful wage increases for our represented employees, and improved levels of transit service for our customers and other stakeholders."

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