— Occupy Chicago (@OccupyChicago) December 5, 2013
Today workers in over one hundred American cities are protesting for higher wages. The wage target for the protesters is $15 but the protests are also contributing to the national conversation on raising the federal minimum wage.
Fast-food workers and labor organizers are marching, waving signs and chanting in cities across the country Thursday amid a push for higher wages.The actions would mark the largest showing yet in a push that began a year ago. At a time when there’s growing national and international attention on economic disparities, labor unions, worker advocacy groups and Democrats are hoping to build public support to raise the federal minimum wage of $7.25, or about $15,000 a year for full-time work.
The protests are ongoing with some claims of 130 cities. It is certainly one of the largest protests of its kind.
In New York City, about 100 protesters blew whistles and beat drums while marching into a McDonald’s at around 6:30 a.m.; one startled customer grabbed his food and fled as they flooded the restaurant, while another didn’t look up from eating and reading amid their chants of “We can’t survive on $7.25!”
Community leaders took turns giving speeches for about 15 minutes until the police arrived and ordered protesters out of the store. The crowd continued to demonstrate outside for about 45 minutes. A McDonald’s manager declined to be interviewed and asked that the handful of customers in the store not be bothered.
Fast food work was long considered temporary work, but with a stagnating economy those working in fast food are likely to stay put for some time and need to think about surviving on what they have.
— The Other 98% (@other98) December 5, 2013
In the very least there is renewed hope that working people’s issues may get some discussion rather than the endless discussion of Wall Street’s issues – debt, cutting benefits, and austerity. How about a little balance in our politics?
Until then justice is in the streets.