Chicago fast food workers join nationwide strike

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Hundreds of fast food workers in Chicago joined a nationwide strike today calling it the Fight for 15: $15 dollars an hour. Most say they make around $9.

Nationally, it’s being billed as the biggest one-day strike by minimum wage workers ever.  The Chicagoland rallies were part of a day of protest nationwide, as fast-food and retail workers in some 60 cities walk off the job to back demands for more money.

They say they’re tired of working full-time and still struggling to afford food and shelter.

“Every time I ask for a raise, they tell me “You shouldn’t have joined that union.  You ain’t getting no raise,’ said Tyree Johnson, a McDonald’s Employee.  “But I’m fighting for $15 and I will get it.”

The event in The Loop followed a rally at the Rock n Roll McDonald’s in River North. About 200 people were there including some McDonald’s and Walmart employees as well as other members of the Chicago Teachers Union and Service Employees International.  They blasted the effects of low wages not just on these workers, but on the nation’s economy.

“We end up subsidizing McDonald’s and all these low-wage employers by providing their workers with assistance,” said Rep Jan Schakowsky for the 9th District.

The congresswoman went on to mock the McDonald’s employee budget tool and the advice it offers for living on a low income.

But it’s not just McDonald’s, these protesters are targeting about 20 national brands.

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  • Chris

    I usually consider myself a liberal but this is ridiculous. If they want to make more money, they need to LEARN the skills needed to do so. I earned 2 bachelor's degrees before I got a job making more than $15/hour in the marketing field. Even then, I had to go back and get a Master's Degree to continue moving up.

    • Paul

      Minimum wage hasn't kept up with inflation and is simply not enough with today's cost of living. Corporations grow their profits, but the labor force behind those profits is not getting any benefit.

      • bob

        LOL! Common sense tells you $15/hr flipping burgers at McDonalds is ridiculous. You obviously don't understand economics and how the market dictates the minimum wage scale.

  • diane

    Minimum wage for minimum job skills. These are entry level jobs NOT meant to be a lifetime goal. Many of these companies give a person their first orientation into the real world of employment . Also included are wardrobe, meals and some health benefits. Yes its hard to live on minimum wage but strive to improve one's talents, educate oneself , develop people skills and become more valuable than you will be worth more money. Walking off a job doesn't make you irreplaceable.

  • esco

    $15 an hour for these kids to play with their cell phone while the older workers carry the workload. Sounds like a sweet deal for the youngsters.

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