Another 'Fight For 15' Fast Food Workers Strike Set For Thursday
By Melissa McEwen in Food on Sep 3, 2014 7:00PM
Fast food workers will go on strike and engage in civil disobedience Thursday in their latest effort to win a $15 hourly wage and the ability to form unions. The Fight For 15 effort, supported by Service Employees International Union, will take place in 150 cities, including Chicago. The strikers will include workers from over 100 different food-related employers including Burger King, Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Domino’s and KFC.
In May, many protesters were arrested for criminal trespass outside of McDonald’s Headquarters in Oak Brook when they protested the annual shareholder’s meeting. Much of the organization for the Fight For 15 was done here in Illinois, where workers gathered for a convention this July.
In late July, the battle to hold McDonald’s accountable reached a major milestone when a government ruling determined that McDonald’s counted as a “joint employer.” In the past, McDonalds had maintained that it’s franchisees and not the national corporation were responsible for labor policy and any labor violations. This is important for many of the workers claiming wage theft.
President Obama mentioned the effort in his Labor Day speech saying "All across the country right now there’s a national movement going on made up of fast-food workers organizing to lift wages so they can provide for their families with pride and dignity." Many workers tell stories of working long hours, sometimes at multiple restaurants, while barely able to make ends meet. So far only Seattle has been convinced to adopt the $15 minimum wage.