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Fast-food walkout in Atlanta

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Updated: 8/29/2013 12:25 pm
ATLANTA (WSB-TV) -- Employees at an Atlanta McDonald’s walked out early Thursday morning as part of a nationwide strike.

Organizers said employees in 50 cities across the country are calling for $15 an hour and the right to unionize.

Atlanta Jobs With Justice said there are 77,248 fast-food workers in Atlanta earning a median wage of $8.59 an hour. The organization said that’s more than $10 less per hour than an adult with one child needs to meet basic needs.
A walkout is also planned later Thursday morning at the Church's Chicken on Moreland Avenue.

Thursday's planned walkouts follow a series of strikes that began last November in New York City, then spread to cities including Chicago, Detroit and Seattle. Workers say they want $15 an hour, which would be about $31,000 a year for full-time employees. That's more than double the federal minimum wage, which many fast food workers make, of $7.25 an hour, or $15,000 a year.

McDonald's Corp. and Burger King Worldwide Inc. say that they don't make decisions about pay for the independent franchisees that operate the majority of their U.S. restaurants.

For the restaurants it does own, McDonald's said in a statement that pay starts at minimum wage but the range goes higher, depending on the employee's position and experience level. It said that raising entry-level wages would mean higher overall costs, which could result in higher prices on menus.

"That would potentially have a negative impact on employment and business growth in our restaurants, as well as value for our customers," the company said in a statement.

The Wendy's Co. and Yum Brands Inc., which owns KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, did not respond to a request for comment.

The National Restaurant Association says the low wages reflect the fact that most fast-food workers tend to be younger and have little work experience. Scott DeFife, a spokesman for the group, says that doubling wages would hurt job creation, noting that fast-food chains are already facing higher costs for ingredients, as well as new regulations that will require them to pay more in health care costs.
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briank - 9/15/2013 8:53 PM
0 Votes
The union thing would never work. Union power comes from the workers having specific skills that the company cannot find elsewhere. I do not think chopping lettuce is a skill that is hard to find. Also the workers demanding the $15 an hour pay will be pushed out as soon the pay rate was put in place. They will find one worker that can replace three of the current workers. I am sure there are people that can replace three current fast food workers and might even do a better job too. The workers complain but don't see the economics of fast food management. I think they are shooting for $15 an hour but if they get $10 they will say they won. But they are not going g to get $10 an hour, just get a lot of people fired.

osprey1 - 8/29/2013 2:19 PM
1 Vote
This is nothing more than the unions trying to "beef" up their union pay by finding suckers to join the union so they (union bosses) can get a pay raise. Don't count on them when you need them, they will dodge all your problems until it's time for a new contract.

wishmistress - 8/29/2013 12:55 PM
2 Votes
Fire every last one of them and hire those who are willing to work. This is NOT a career job. If you don't like the pay, get EDUCATED in something that will pay more. Slugs.
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