News Column

US Study: Occupy Wall Street Protesters Were Wealthy, Well Educated

Jan 29, 2013
Occupy Wall Street Protesters

The thousands of protestors who rallied against Wall Street greed on behalf of the 99-percent in the United States came from households with income above $100,000 and were well educated, a new study said Tuesday.

The Occupy Wall Street movement, which erupted in New York in 2010, spread to many cities in the US and around the world. The movement fought the 1 per cent of population that holds a disproportionally large percentage of the nation's wealth, as represented by Wall Street.

But a new study published by the City University of New York's Joseph Murphy Institute for Worker Education and Labor Studies showed that a third of the protesters were well educated and came from families earning more than 100,000 dollars a year.

The study said the other two-thirds were employed professionals, with experienced political activists leading the protests; 55 percent of the protestors were men and mostly white.

"Occupy Wall Street was not a spontaneous eruption but rather an action carefully planned by committed activists," the study said.

"It's a pretty affluent demographic and highly educated," said Professor Ruth Milkman, one of the study's authors. "Many were the children of the elite, if you will."

"Most Occupy Wall Street activists and supporters were deeply skeptical of the mainstream political system as an effective vehicle for social change," according to the study.

The study said some of the protesters had been laid off before they joined the movement.

Source: Copyright 2013 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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