Truck hits minimum wage protesters in Michigan; several hurt

National/World

Several people were injured Tuesday morning when a pickup truck collided with a group of protesters calling for the right to form unions in Flint, Michigan, in what police said appears to be an accident.

Police Chief Tim Johnson said he doesn’t believe the crash near a near a fast-food restaurant was intentional and that the driver “seemed pretty shaken up” afterward. Johnson initially said four or five people had non-life-threatening injuries, but later said eight were hospitalized.

The pickup was later hit by a utility truck. It was dark at the time of the crash.

Michigan Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gretchen Whitmer was among those participating in the protest. She wasn’t injured and a post on her Twitter account says she’s “incredibly sad that so many people were hurt.” Whitmer and Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, a Republican, are battling for governor.

The protests are part of an effort to elect pro-union candidates in the November general election. Walkouts are planned in Milwaukee on Wednesday and Chicago on Thursday.

Johnson said those who were struck were at the end of a group of protesters walking along a street. He says the driver “acted like he didn’t see them.”

The protest was organized by Fight for $15, a national movement seeking to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour. Democrat Rashida Tlaib will join fast-food workers Tuesday afternoon in Detroit. Tlaib faces candidates from the Green and Working Class parties for the 13th House seat.

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