The 76-year-old Academy Award winner and former resident of Pound Ridge in Westchester County was among eight protesters arrested for disorderly conduct at the Capitol building in Albany on Monday, May 8, according to the One Fair Wage organization.
Troopers arrested the group after they allegedly blocked entrances and pushed against troopers in hopes of being arrested, Spectrum News 1 Albany reports.
There were no reports of injuries stemming from the ordeal.
Protestors were calling on lawmakers to pass legislation that would guarantee a minimum wage for restaurant workers, in addition to the tips that they receive.
The arrests came days after Gov. Kathy Hochul signed a bill that raises the minimum wage to $17 in New York City and its suburbs, and $16 for the rest of the state by 2026. It does not, however, include tipped restaurant workers.
At the Capitol on Monday, the Thelma & Louise and Stepmom star was joined by former lieutenant gubernatorial candidate Ana Maria Achila along with dozens of tipped workers and their children.
Addressing the crowd, Sarandon recounted her days as a restaurant worker and single mother, and said higher wages are about showing respect.
“I know how difficult it is… they are very very important, need to be treated with dignity,” she said. “They were essential, they were the ones who were left (during the pandemic) who kept the economy going.”
Also on hand was state Sen. Robert Jackson, a Democrat whose 31st District includes northern Manhattan.
“By supporting the One Fair Act, we can ensure that all workers in our state have access to fair wages, tips, and working conditions, providing them with the economic security they deserve while strengthening an industry that New York depends on,” Jackson told the crowd.
“I call on all of my colleagues in the senate and assembly, get on the bill and let’s move it now. Let’s get it done.”
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