News Column

Fast-Food Workers Go on Strike

December 5, 2013

Sky News US Team

fast food workers on strike
Fast-food workers scheduled walkouts and protests for 100 U.S. cities Thursday (Sky News)

Fast-food workers are taking to the streets across the U.S. to demand a living wage.

Strikes are planned in 100 cities, but it is not clear if the action will shut down restaurants or even disrupt operations.

Organisers have also planned rallies in many cities.

The actions are intended to build on a campaign that began about a year ago to call attention to the difficulties of living on the federal minimum wage of $7.25 (4.70) an hour.

That is about $15,000 (9,200) a year for a full-time employee.

But the campaign so far has failed to have a significant impact on an industry that competes aggressively on low prices.

Workers also staged a strike in the summer, but results were mixed, with some restaurants unable to serve customers and others seemingly unaffected.

Protesters are calling for $15 (10) an hour, although many see the figure as a rallying point rather than a near-term possibility.

President Barack Obama has said he would back a minimum wage to $10.10 (6) an hour, and on Wednesday he addressed income inequality in a speech.

The National Restaurant Association, an industry lobbying group, called the demonstrations a "campaign engineered by national labour groups".

It said the vast majority of participants were union protesters rather than workers.

This week, some Democrats in Congress sent letters to fast-food giants including McDonald's, Burger King and Domino's Pizza to urge them to raise wages for store workers.

(c) Sky News 2013

Original headline: Fast-Food Workers Stage Strikes Across US

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Source: (c) Sky News 2013