Workers in New York City, Chicago, St. Louis, Detroit, Milwaukee, Kansas City and Flint, Michigan are planning to walk out of the restaurants for an hour or two. The workers are protesting to be unionized and receive wages of $15 an hour, which is close to double the current minimum wage, reports The Guardian.
“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,” Jonathan Westin, director of Fast Food Forward, told The Guardian. “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.”
Fast Food Forward, the campaign behind the walk-outs, claims that workers at fast food restaurants make the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. The campaign believes that doubling these wages would benefit workers and boost the economy. The campaign also claims that the average fast food worker in New York makes $11,000, reports The Guardian.
The New York Labor Department tells a different story. It states that the median pay for the nearly 50,000 fast food workers in New York City is $9 an hour, or $18,500 a year.
President Barack Obama called for an improved minimum wage last week during a speech in Galesburg, Illinois. President Obama is pushing for the federal minimum wage to be increased to $9 an hour, reports The Guardian.