Many McDonald’s workers are only making minimum wage, and they’re most definitely not loving it!
Thousands of fast food workers fed up with low pay stopped taking orders today to make demands for better work conditions. Workers in 150 cities across the country — including New York, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Nashville, Durham, Los Angeles — staged a mass protest that brought several locations to a standstill, Reuters reports. Approximately 400-450 people were arrested in Manhattan for blocking traffic in Times Square this morning as they shouted for McDonald’s to raise their wages to $15 an hour.
“With $15, I’d be able to save up enough to rent a home for my kids,” LaToya Walker, a McDonald’s worker from Queens that lives in a homeless shelter with her five kids, told Reuters. She’s currently earning about $8 an hour. To put this in better perspective, raising wages to $15 an hour would mean that a full-time employee could earn about $30,000 a year.
People in Los Angeles were a little more direct in their message as they went into McDonald’s restaurants to talk to managers.
McDonald’s seemed to be getting the brunt of the protest, but demonstrators weren’t just focusing on them. Burger King, Wendy’s and KFC were among the other fast food chains that workers were aiming their demands at today.
The protest came just two days after President Obama made a Labor Day address stating, “If I were busting my butt in the service industry and wanted an honest day’s pay for an honest day’s work, I’d join a union.” Just as people came together from different companies to push for fair wages, they’re also hoping to stick together by creating a union which would help to govern management practices at fast food chains.