About two dozen employees of Comcast’s offices at Reston Town Center took to the streets Thursday afternoon to protest President Donald Trump’s actions on immigration. The rally was one of a number nationwide by the telecommunications company’s Technology and Product team.
Holly Bazemore, the company’s director of elastic cloud strategy and deployments, was part of the rally Thursday at the corner of New Dominion Parkway and Reston Parkway. She said shutting the nation off from immigrants would have a devastating effect on companies like Comcast.
“Diversity is what makes innovation, and innovation is what makes great products,” she said. “We’re here to say that our products wouldn’t be as wonderful without our diverse teams — we can’t [be diverse] with this immigration ban.”
Bazemore said simultaneous rallies took place outside Comcast offices in New York, Washington, Denver and the Silicon Valley, as well as at the company’s corporate headquarters in Philadelphia.
Employees of Comcast in Philadelphia are walking out in protest against trumps immigration order. pic.twitter.com/hk69WdH088
— Bianca Portillo (@BiancaAmarilis) February 2, 2017
— Tajha C-L (@TajhaLanier) February 2, 2017
The employees were protesting personally, Bazemore said, not on behalf of Comcast; however, she added, the company allocated time to any workers who wished to participate in the hourlong rally.
Comcast spokesman John Demming responded to technology news website Technical.ly about the rallies:
“We understand that some of our employees are concerned and we respect their desire to express their opinions. Our primary focus is to make sure that all of our employees feel safe in their jobs, including while traveling.”
The rallying employees in Reston on Thursday received a lot of feedback, positive and negative, from passing motorists as they chanted and raised their signs, but they remained undeterred.
“We are all together for the same cause, all over the country,” said Dwarkesh Marakna, a DevOps engineer at the Reston office.