Largest Fast Food Workers Strike Hits Seven Cities Across US

Common Dreams – by Jacob Chamberlain

Thousands of fast food workers went on strike in branches across seven U.S. cities on Monday in what could be the largest strike of its kind in U.S. history.

The workers are protesting unlivable wages and are calling for a nationwide living wage of $15 dollars an hour.

“A lot of the workers are living in poverty, you know, not being able to afford to put food on the table or take the train to work,” said Jonathan Westin, director of Fast Food Forward, who has been organizing fast-food workers in New York City.  

On Monday morning walkouts began in branches of McDonald’s, Burger King, KFC, Domino’s, Wendy’s and other restaurants across Chicago, Detroit, Milwaukee, St Louis, Kansas City, and Flint, Michigan, as well as New York City.

A large rally is now expected at New York’s Union Square at 2pm.

“The workers are striking over the fact that they can’t continue to maintain their families on the wages they’re being paid in the fast food industry,” said Westin.

The average fast food worker in New York makes $8.25 per hour, with $11,000 being the national yearly average while the national minimum wage remains at a staggering $7.25.

According to Fast Food Forward, fast food workers in New York City only make 25% of the money they need to survive. Meanwhile the average daily salary of the CEOs of those same fast food chains amounts to $25,000 per day on average—over two times what the average worker makes in one year.

Fast Food Forward has organized alongside New York Communities for Change, Jobs with Justice and Action Now with backing from The Service Employees International Union.

The movement has grown across the United States since fast food workers’ protests sprung up last November, and Monday’s actions are expected to be the largest fast food worker mobilization to date.

“Workers hope to draw attention to a range of issues from low wages to wage theft to McDonald’s recently released budget calculator that insulted and angered many employees struggling to survive on fast food wages,” writes Allison Kilkenny at the Nation.

“The more and more workers continue to take action and continue to publicize their fight,” Westin told Salon, “the more and more it starts to get at the fast food industry’s biggest asset, which is their name brand. And I think that’s what we’re beginning to see in a very real way.”

“I know you’re tired of suffering,” KFC employee Naquasia LeGrand had told fellow workers at a rally last Wednesday to announce the strike. “I don’t want to see the next generation suffering and suffering. I don’t want my kids suffering. I want to make sure they have a better future than I do.”

“So if I want that to happen, I need you guys to stand with me just as long as I’m standing with you.”

http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/07/29-4

26 thoughts on “Largest Fast Food Workers Strike Hits Seven Cities Across US

  1. Oh yea, just like a lot of employers now days, if ya have anything to say about wages or conditions the employer will just say that you are replacable and how ungrateful the employee is.

  2. The POTUS will be calling the KFC strike “racist”. Holder will conduct a in depth investigation. Al Sharpton will call it justice for Trayvon. Jesse Jackson will want to get paid for mediating.

    1. LOL BentSpear. And when they are all done they will dicide it was all Bush’s fault and blame it on the previous administration.

  3. Very clever marketing has created a necessary niche whereby most Westerners have been brainwashed into thinking fast food eating is both nutritious, enjoyable and an essential requirement in today’s society.

    Total RUBBISH.

    We just don’t need it and never did. All we are doing is filling their pockets with cash while they fill our guts and our needs with total crap.

    We must wake up and walk away and cook our own healthy organic non GMO fresh food.

  4. Since when does a teenagers unskilled job of flipping burgers become a career worthy of $15.00 hr.? All that will do is jack up the already sky high prices of horse meat pattys and lard laced frenched frys to a level that most unemployed America cannot afford anyway!

    1. I can’t find it right now, but earlier today I heard that the median age for employees at Mc Arsenic’s is 35-49. That damn sure ain’t unskilled teenagers, it is the former middle class victoms of “downsizing” and shipping the good jobs to China. struggling to stay alive.

  5. Anyone who spends time on their feet slaving for a corporation that makes billions and pays their ceo and executives the rediculous wages they do ( as if they applied for the job. They are all in the club)deserves to be compensated for their time.if fast food costs go up they will try to pass the cost to consumers instead of lowering their profits, of course, and we will stop buying their nasty crap. If a few of them went under B.O.zo the clown would probably bail em out with our tax dollars anyways.

  6. Even in a college town like Alpine, Texas (Sul Ross State), most of the employees at fast food joints (McD, Subway, Dairy Queen, Sonic) are in the 25 to 50 age range with some high school and college students as well…same goes for “non fast food” restaurants…and I know for a fact a person making minimum wage in that small town can’t support a family on that wage…in New York City? Dang! All power to the working poor, and I applaud your efforts to support your families working not going on welfare…I hope you protesters/strikers get that 15 dollars an hour…maybe then rural paramedics (who make just a cut above minimum wage saving lives….seriously!) will also get decent pay…I’m not being sarcastic, either. Go for it!

  7. What does the ‘I am a woman’ sign have to do with it. Now if it said ‘I am a black woman’ I would get it because I am not a racist.

  8. Since when is fast food suppose to provide a living wage. It is great for students who need extra cash and experience but at no time did I ever think it was a long range living plan of mine.

    1. These jobs used to be high school student jobs, my daughter had one at the local Burger King in her senior year. Now it is college graduates and recently one owner of a McDonalds bragged they now have college graduates working for them. A few years ago in Bush’s term they made hamberger places manufacturing believe it or not; look it up.

    2. Since these treasonous mother f#@kers hijacked our industry, sent it to China, and left us with no jobs except working in their so called service industry.
      That’s when, you pompous ass.

      1. Thanks Henry, My frustration left me going to sleep with this ignorant question unanswered. Some people just cannot grasp the concept that these people are the, dare I call them the fortunate (they are working), FORMER middle class.
        Sometimes I just want to pound sand uphill, if you know what I mean! 🙂

    3. When it’s the only job available & robbing & stealing from people is morally objectionable. Right now there are people with top education degrees flipping burgers & deep frying seagull wings just to make ends meet. Not their choice. Lot of them hold student loans that they want to make right & pay off.(student loan=beginning of enslavement). There is a plethora of reasons highly skilled people are forced to take on low paying jobs currently. Any dullard that would make a attempt to use a thought process would see that.

      1. “Any dullard that would make a attempt to use a thought process would see that.”
        🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  9. What’s not mentioned is the fact that these people are being killed in two ways.

    First (figuratively speaking) in the wage department, and secondly (literally) because they have to eat the cr@p they serve to save money on meals.

    1. Very true, however that is an unwanted distraction at this point. These people are trying to stay above water financially. Trying to eat healthy is far from a priority when the babies are crying and the landlord is threatening to evict.
      PRIORITIES IN ORDER!
      For instance the protest group, OVERPASSES FOR IMPEACHMENT has had some hiccups because some people foolishly think that with Soetero gone all is well. They buck at the idea that this movement is basically a snowball rolling down a mountain. OFI is about starting at the top and impeaching all public officers per Article 2 section 4 of our beloved Constitution.
      We have lost a few faint hearted people because of it. But I also think it has enforced the resolve of the movement.
      BTW, at the protests I have been to the public response is very very strong. Will we succeed? I don’t know what that means anymore, because I feel that if we just wake more sheeple up, mission accomplished. OK, its not the revolution some of us are waiting for (Yup I’m still dressed up for the dance!) but I’m not just sitting on my ass!
      Impeachment of Soetero may not even be a viable option. Due to the smoke and mirrors through which he reached the presidency he may not be impeachable. See this:

      //gwnd.com/2011/07/321969/

      Providing that Ms. Kidd is correct, we have witnessed a Coup de Etat and bloodshed may probably be the only option.
      I’m thinking that it is the only option left.

      1. I don’t see impeachment as an option anyway, unless he were to be incarcerated during the proceedings. Then, at least he COULD just become so despondent from being locked up, he just MIGHT commit ‘suicide’. Hang ‘himself’, with a belt or shoelaces, or even a bedsheet.

        It COULD happen. 🙂

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