Fast Food Workers Act Locally, Globally

Fast food workers undertook job actions of various sort against their restaurants in many cities around the world. Click here.  A video feature on faces of striking workers is here. Video from USA of workers in NY is here.

Forbes magazine offered this,

Fast-food workers strike across U.S.

  @CNNMoney May 15, 2014: 11:24 AM ET

fast food worker strike 051514Fast food workers gathered in New York last week to announce the global strikes that are taking place today.

Fast-food workers walked off their jobs in dozens of cities on Thursday, demanding a $15-an-hour minimum wage.

Union organizers say the strikes will reach 150 U.S. cities and several countries.

Danny Rosa said he started striking at 5 a.m. at the Burger King in Dorchester, Mass., where he works. He and a group of co-workers shouted the slogan, “Fight for $15 and union.”

“I am proud that I am striking and I am trying to get a better life,” Rosa said. “I am fighting for everyone in fast food.”

Rosa planned to travel to downtown Boston later in the morning so he could meet up with other strikers at a Burger King there.

Rosa is 19 years old and lives with his mother and older brother and sister. He wants his hourly wage, now $9 an hour, to go to $15 so he can eventually move out.

Chad Tall who works at Taco Bell, a unit of Yum! Brands, was also striking with other workers outside a McDonald’s in New York.

“We’re here to get $15 and a union, we’re here to strike, we’re here to make some noise and we’re here to disrupt because that’s the only way to get their attention,” Tall said.

Nakiel Clemons said he went on strike this morning outside the Durham, North Carolina, Burger King where he works. He is headed to Raleigh later today.

Nakiel is 33 years old and has a 1-year-old daughter and a 12-year-old son. He earns $7.45 an hour and says he can’t survive on that.

“I can’t worry about my manager seeing me on the strike line, I have to speak out.” said Nakiel.

Currently, the median pay for fast-food workers is just over $9 an hour, or about $18,500 a year. That’s roughly $4,500 lower than the Census Bureau’s poverty threshold level of $23,000 for a family of four.

The “Fight for $15” campaign started in New York in November 2012, when 200 fast-food workers demanded $15 and the right to form a union without retaliation.

Union organizers say the movement is credited with elevating the debate about inequality in the U.S. and helping raise the minimum wage in some states.

Earlier this year, workers in three states filed class-action suits against McDonald’s alleging widespread wage theft.

In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, McDonald’s said worker protests might force it to raise wages this year.

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