Thursday, 16 May 2013

Strike wave at fastfood chains

In the US, there’s a modest strike wave going on at fastfood chains. So far, actions have taken place in New York, Chicago, St. Louis, Detroit and Milwaukee. Employees demand $15 per hour and the right to form a union without intimidation.
Various observers (example) have noted that US labour law hardly offers any protection any more to workers who organise. Increasingly, workers opt for actions different from the traditional union model (not only in fastfood, but also for example at Walmart). In the case of the fastfood chains, it regards one-day strikes supported by unions and community organisations.
According to an editorial in a local newspaper, the actions may appear futile, but the idea is to expose the growing inequality in a sector where a CEO may earn up to over 1,000 times as much as the average employee. A possible strategy is to fight for local authorities to raise the minimum wage or introduce living wage regulations.

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