An estimated 1,200 Comcast employees left their desks for a rally on Thursday afternoon, marching through downtown Philadelphia in protest of Donald Trump’s executive order banning immigration from seven majority-Muslim countries. “Love, not hate, is what makes this country great,” chanted the protesters, who began marching through Center City around 2PM ET. It was the second major corporate protest of the week, following a company-endorsed walkout at Google on Tuesday.
Employees organized the rally in a corporate Slack channel, sources told Philly news site Billy Penn. The rally appeared to be taking place in Comcast offices in Portland and Washington, DC, as well as Philadelphia and its West Chester suburb. The Philadelphia rally included a march from Comcast’s offices to City Hall a few blocks away. Protesters returned to their desks about 45 minutes later.
The rally was not officially endorsed by Comcast, but the company allowed protesters to march without asking them to record the time away from their desks as time off. “We understand that some of our employees are concerned and we respect their desire to express their opinions,” the company said in a statement. “Our primary focus is to make sure that all of our employees feel safe in their jobs, including while traveling. We have assured our employees that no one will be asked to travel to a place that would result in them feeling vulnerable in any way. And, we have enhanced our employee resources programs to help any concerned employee navigate through this matter.”
Protesters shared dozens of images of the protest on social media using the hashtag #techhasnowalls. The Verge has reached out to Comcast for comment.
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