About The Push For 15, Or the Minimum Wage Strike of 2013

Quotes from the article will be in black, my comments will be in red:

US fast-food workers strike over low wages in Nationwide protests, Thousands due to strike across 100 cities through the day in a signal of the growing clamour [sic] for action on income equality.

• Q&A with a McDonalds worker in Chicago

“In Chicago, hundreds of protesters gathered outside a McDonalds at 6.15am. As a large “Christmas Grinch” ambled about in freezing temperatures, demonstrators chanted for the minimum wage to be increased to $15 per hour.  It was the first of nine strikes in Chicago, with employees at McDonalds, Wendy’s, Walgreens, Macy’s and Sears also due to walk off shift. Low wage workers were due to strike across 100 cities through the day, including Boston, Detroit, New York City, Oakland, Los Angeles and St Louis.”

“To put it in perspective, yesterday I got paid, today I have not a dollar in my pocket,” said Akilarose Thompson, 24. She was on strike from the McDonalds in Chicago’s West Town – the scene of Thursday morning’s protest that kicked off actions around the city.  Thompson has worked at McDonalds for almost a year, serving customers on the cash register or on the drive-thru window. She got a pay rise in June and now earns $8.28 an hour – three cents above Illinois’s minimum wage of $8.25. Thompson works a second job too, at Red Lobster, but still has to go to food banks to support her and her 15-month-old daughter.  ‘Sometimes two or three a month. Lots of times you can only go to the same one once a month, so I find different ones to go to. I have to in order to put food on the table,’ she said.”

This is told as a sob story to make you think that every minimum wage worker faces the same plight that she faces. 

“It is so depressing. You put a smile on because you’re in customer service and you have to. But on the inside it really breaks you down when you’re always at work but you’re always broke.” She is not alone. The Greater Chicago food depository, which donates food through banks, pantries and soup kitchens, says it helps 678,000 adults and children in the Chicago metropolitan area every year.  The hardest thing, Thompson said, is the compromises she is forced to make because she does not earn enough money. She lives in West Humboldt Park, an area blighted by drug dealing. She worries about not being able to provide for her daughter.”

The impression given here is that the money she makes for her jobs at minimum wage, I would lay odds that she lives in a Section 8 apartment/house, and is eligible for food stamps and WIC (if her child is under 5).  I also bet that she can get an Obama Phone and go here and apply for it if she does not already have them.

“The hardest thing, Thompson said, is the compromises she is forced to make because she does not earn enough money.”  Well Hell’s Bells I have the same problem, I want this, this, and that, but can only afford what I can pay for so I must compromise between my dream and reality.  And the reality is that you have to live within your income, unless, of course, you are the government.

“It’s the Christmas holiday, and I can’t buy presents. I actually had to choose between buying my baby a coat and starting her Christmas shopping. That’s my biggest thing right now – I’m afraid I won’t be able to provide her her first proper Christmas because I have so many checks coming.”  How many of you are making $15 (what they want for flipping burgers) or more an hour have to make the same type of decision?  After all you pay the full rent with no government assistance, have to pay for your own phone, and pay taxes before you can do any of that.

In 2012, 75.3 million workers in the United States age 16 and over were paid at hourly rates, representing 59.0 percent of all wage and salary workers.  Among those paid by the hour, 1.6 million earned exactly the prevailing federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. About 2.0 million had wages below the federal minimum. Together, these 3.6 million workers with wages at or below the federal minimum made up 4.7 percent of all hourly paid workers.  This is from the Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

in Chicago, the Fight for 15 campaign has been put together by the Workers Organizing Committee of Chicago, made up of a series of smaller action groups such as Arise Chicago and Lakeview Action Coalition – campaigners are calling for the federal rate to be increased to $15 per hour.”

Do you remember ACORN?  The ones who were caught red handed registering non existing people to vote forDemocrates?  It isn’t called ACORN any more but Action, and Lakeview Action Coalition is one of the heads that this Hydra grew after ACORN was put out of business. See Here
And the Workers Organizing Committee of Chicago? It was founded in November of 2012, the Workers Organizing Committee of Chicago is a union of downtown fast food and retail workers. The workers’ Fight for 15 campaign seeks a $15 an hour wage and the right to form a union without interference. The Fight for 15 campaign is supported by a coalition of dozens of community, labor and faith-based groups including: Action Now; Albany Park Neighborhood Council; Arise Chicago; Brighton Park Neighborhood Council; Chicago Coalition for the Homeless; Chicago Jobs with Justice; Chicago Teachers Union; Grassroots Collaborative; Illinois Hunger Coalition; Jane Addams Senior Caucus; Lakeview Action Coalition; Southside Together Organizing for Power (STOP); SEIU Local 1; SEIU Local 73; SEIU Healthcare Illinois;  Indiana, Southsiders Organized for Unity and Liberation;  United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America Western Region; and Workers United. Source 

You can see that the Lakeview Action Coalition is part of the Workers Organizing Committee of Chicago It was listed twice so as to make it seem that the movement has more support than it actually does.  As for all the other organization listed, neat names, but all have strong Alinskyian ties.  And can be found listed in this article: Catholic Campaign for Human Development in Chicago written back in 2009 By Stephanie Block  and which I have already referred you to above.  Block’s article can be read here:

There is no doubt that this is a well run campaign, 

“The nationwide walkouts come as momentum appears to be gathering for action on increasing the federal minimum wage. On Wednesday, President Barack Obama gave a landmark speech on income equality, which he said was “the defining challenge of our time”, while in November thousands of Walmart workers walked off the job in the latest of a series of protests against low pay and poor conditions.”

But just contemplate what will happen to the price of fast food if they succeed.  They may well be cutting their nose off to spite their face as the franchises either automate to stay profitable or close down for lack of profit.  Well I suppose the government could subsidize the cost of a bugger, but you would have to take your 1040 form with you to prove that you qualified for the reduced rate. 

Marry Christmas!

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Published in: on December 6, 2013 at 16:39  Leave a Comment  
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