Socialist Worker

US fast food workers strike for a living wage

Issue No. 2354

Hundreds of striking fast food workers rally on Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee

Hundreds of striking fast food workers rally on Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee (Pic: Light Brigading)

Hundreds of fast food and retail workers in the city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, went on strike last week.

Workers are demanding a living wage of $15 (£10) an hour and the right to form a union without victimisation from bosses.

They followed some 1,200 fast food and retail workers in Chicago, Detroit, St Louis and New York who struck over the past month.

The wave of one-day walkouts was the biggest fast food strike in US history.

Fast food and retail workers are some of the lowest paid in the US, making around £4.70 an hour. Most fast food workplaces are ununionised. Yet the fast food industry is worth £131 billion.

There has been widespread support for the strikers.

In Milwaukee workers walked out of businesses such as McDonald’s, Burger King, Pizza Hut and TK Maxx. They joined a mass rally which shut down Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee’s busiest street.

In Detroit, striking workers in McDonald’s restaurants were joined on the picket line by workers brought in by bosses to scab. 

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Tue 21 May 2013, 19:16 BST
Issue No. 2354
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