Fast-food workers to strike over pay

SAN DIEGO — About two dozen fast-food workers are expected to strike in downtown San Diego Thursday as part of a nation-wide fight to raise the minimum wage.

“I feel like I should be making more, yes,” said Diego Rios, an employee at a downtown McDonald’s.

Rios will take part in a one-day strike with other fast-food workers who demand the minimum wage be raised to $15 an hour.

“I’m just trying to be a voice.  Not just for myself, but for everyone I work with, every McDonald’s in California, anyone that’s ever done any fast-food – they deserve to be making more than what they do,” said Rios.

San Diego is among more than 30 cities that will have strikes Thursday.  In recent weeks, there have been protests from fast-food workers across the country.

“Let me tell you, those workers are going to be shaking like a leaf because they are doing something historic.  Everyone of those workers is like Rosa Parks,” said Rabbi Laurie Coskey with the Interfaith Committee for Worker Justice.

A $15 an hour wage for a full-time worker comes out to a little more than $30,000 a year.

“It’s a dog chasing its tail.  You raise what you’re paying them, you raise what people have to pay.  It just never ends,” said one fast-food customer.

The fast food industry argues that wages are fair and that many workers already make more than minimum wage.

58 comments

  • tont

    Oh wow im being forced to eat healthy for a day maybe I will just give up fast food for good and you wont need that job anymore :)

    • Paul

      Perhaps their taxes will no longer support your job! Think again. We are all in this together and until we raise all boats, the yachts will soon sink!

    • Concerned Taxpayer

      That would be ideal so more people could get paid more and afford to eat at healthier foo places thereby created more jobs for the health food stores and then McDonald could go out of business- cant wait! Lets support these workers by creating more jobs and raising the minimum wage to a living wage of $15! :-) everybody wins! (Except of course the billionaire CEOs who might actually have to pay taxes for once!)

    • Chad

      If a fast food worker gets to make $15hr that’s more than a normal SMOG TECHNITION makes. That makes me a $ 50 hr tech , I wish. And I went to collage to make what a fast food money maker wants NOW??? Wow!!!

      • Chad

        And being a smog tech. If a McDonald’s worker can make this much I will apply for a brain dead job easy money.

      • Tina

        Too bad you didn't learn how to spell COLLEGE in "collage" or TECHNICIAN! STFU! SUPPORT WORKERS RIGHTS NOW OR MOVE TO CHINA YOU FASCIST!!

        • Realist

          Workers do you have rights, but demanding more than your market value for a job is not one of them. Do realize how childish you come across when your yelling at people in your comments while not making any valid points of your own?

    • brentthomasnelson

      It's hard for me to understand the logic behind any of these workers' thoughts. Sure, I can understand wanting more money; we all want more money and there is nothing wrong with trying to make some. However, working at a fast food restaurant, a business that employs students who have yet to finish high school, should not be paying upwards of $15 an hour to a basic employee. Minimum wage rises naturally with inflation and costs of living by state. A raise that substantial is ridiculous in comparison to the real degree earning, working world.

      If it were so easy to make a $15 an hour I'm sure many people would quit their jobs, or take a second job working fast food just for the crazy increase in personal income it would bring. An extra 30k a year for flipping a damn burger? Count me in.

      In case you couldn't grasp my opinion on the matter I think this is the most entitled, moronic strike anyone has mass participated on in 20 years.

  • Hard Worker

    I am sorry but fast food jobs are meant to be entry level jobs for people with no experience, usually teenagers or college students looking to make enough money for going out on the weekends, or to save up and buy their first car. The idea that the raise given to them from a percentage perspective is three times what any other worker is getting as raises these days is ridiculous.

    • Concerned Taxpayer

      Fast food jobs are quickly becoming the only jobs left. The myth of teenagers in high school working at these places isn’t gonna work anymore. These people are in their 30s and up with families to feed. Have you seen the rent prices in San Diego?! McDonald’s rips us all off daily while making billions – the least they can do is give back to the community who they’ve made poor- pay your workers a living wage!!!

      • Realist

        Sorry, but if your stupid enough to be in your 30's with a family and your still working at McDonalds, I have no sympathy for you. Even if you have fallen on hard times, it is not my fault you were fired. Get up, go out, and find a real job so you can support your family. Stop asking for a hand out because things are tough and you don't want to fight to make your situation better.

  • Guest

    Yeah, $15/hour minimum wage would probably lead to a $10 cheeseburger. Want to make more money, do what so many others have done. Use that fastfood job as a stepping stone, not a career choice.

    • Concerned Taxpayer

      Actually In N Out has competitive prices and pays its workers $12 and hour so this is a false argument. Same with Costco. Not everyone has to screw over their workers like Walmart does. Stop apologizing for the billionaires and start getting your facts straight! ;)

      • Realist

        Do you have any idea how much more money goes into advertising for Mcdonalds compared to In N Out? Also, In N Out is still family owned, not a franchise.

  • Benavides

    No I do not agree…want more than min. Wage…go and finish school…..not even us that can't find a decent job with a degree… Bitch that bad….times are tuff ….we do what we can. Don't try to line jump.

    • Concerned Taxpayer

      When the minimum wage raises all other wages go up too. A win for fast food workers is a win for all of us… Unless of course you’re a tax dodging billionaire.

      • Realist

        Then why stop at $15? Why not just pay them a million and hour, if simply paying more brings about good results for everyone.

  • Tina

    Looks like McDonald’s corporate anonymous PR minions were already on top of this story. Great job trying to justify indentured servitude- FYI the average fast food employee is nearly 30 years old and graduated high school already. People have kids to feed so

    .17cents more for an unhealthy cheeseburger is the least we can pay as consumers to help keep children out of poverty! Wake up people!!

    • Realist

      You're seriously comparing a job at McDonalds to what our ancestors went through when coming to America? If people cannot learn enough skills to make their value higher than $8 an hour, then they should not be having kids in the first place.

      • Alex

        Spoken like a person coming from a life of privilege. Get your facts straight – why do people like you keep apologizing for billionaires? It's funny because they're screwing you over as well!

        • Realist

          I am still waiting for my page to load the part of your comment that had an substance to it. I'll comment back and let you know when it's finally done.

  • Paul Sullivan

    When prices increase and wages do not – evidence= gas/food vs. income the result is a lower consumption of everything. We can either deny the facts or correct the balance. It seems that the majority or minority of elected officials have done neither. The only answer is to replace every elected official in the next election that has voted against your primary income and security or against your children or grabdchildrens' income and security with respect to their ability to work at fair paying jobs, their ability to get an education, and their ability to vote.

    • Realist

      "When prices increase and wages do not – evidence= gas/food vs. income the result is a lower consumption of everything."

      You are describing inflation, and those actions are the exact thing that people should do in that situation. Consumption of everything does not go down, it is the consumption of non essential items that goes down. When your dollar is worth less, you should spend it more wisely. Is that not common sense to everyone?

  • Brad

    McDonalds makes over $5 billion dollars in profit annually and its CEO makes more in a day than their workers make in an entire year! Something is wrong with this picture. I’m sick of paying taxes to subsidize chicken nuggets while McDonald’s doesn’t have to pay a single dime of taxes. Support the workers or get out of our country with your food that is killing us all!!

    • Realist

      "…while McDonald's doesn't have to pay a single dime of taxes."

      The 2006 annual report for McDonald's Corp. shows a total provision for income taxes of $1.3 billion on pretax income of $4.2 billion worldwide, and an effective rate of 31%. The US federal portion of that was $685 million, of which $633 million was current and the rest deferred. This does not necessarily all represent cash tax paid, but does represent the company's best estimate of the total tax it will eventually pay on account of income earned in 2006.

      Wow, someone was a little off haha.

      • Concerned Taxpayer

        You're clearly not getting the figurative point. Compared to the average tax payer, McDonald's pays much less when you consider their profits- not to mention the SUBSIDIES they receive from US- the TAXPAYERS! You are paying for that cheap food in other places (like subsidies for their marketing and public assistance because they won't pay their workers a living wage nor health benefits)- WAKE UP NOW!

        • Realist

          How can you compare one of the worlds largest corporations in the world to the average tax payer? It is apples an oranges. I personally the average tax payer, and lets not forget that 47% of people done even pay an income tax, pays too much already. Why not lower their taxes and stop asking government to run every aspect of our lives. Take some responsibility and take care of yourself instead of asking government to take care of everything for you.

    • Dee

      "while McDonald's doesn't have to pay a single dime of taxes."

      Looks like you're the type of Einstein demanding $15 an hour…..

  • Concerned Taxpayer

    The minimum wage now is lower than it was 40 years ago (adjusted for inflation). Fast food companies tactics are brilliant- force the population into poverty then get government subsidies to make your food prices lowest and force all the poor people you’ve created to buy your horrible food. It’s a vicious cycle where a handful of fast food execs laugh all the way to their bank in the Cayman Islands- tax dodger corporate scum! Stop forcing consumers to have to pay for your workers govt assistance programs because you won’t pay your fair share! Shame on you Wendy’s, Burgee King, Subway, McDonald’s, etc. In N Out pays its workers $12/hr and seems to be doing great. There never isn’t a line and the food is still cheap and unprocessed. Maybe you can learn something from them?!? Pay your workers a living wage NOW!!!

    • Guest

      Wrong again. Minimum wage in 1973 (40 years ago) was $1.60. Adjusting for inflation would be $8.42. Current minimum wage in CA is $8.00. My source is US Department of Labor. Where is your sources?
      I spent 4 years in college to get my BS RN. My first job only paid $21/hour and my student loans cost me $1100 a month. And I worked fast food in college. I mowed lawns on my days off. Get off Obama's Kool aid and wise up.

      • Concerned Taxpayer

        Yes, you just proved my point. The minimum wage ($8.00) NOW is lower than it was 40 years ago ($8.42) – THANK YOU!

        • Guest

          So how are you justifying $15/hour. Really claiming your the one all know all over $0.42/hour? CA takes more than that in taxes

    • Realist

      "There never isn't a line…"

      Welcome to supply and demand 101. In N Out is rare, and people like it. Obviously they can afford to pay their workers more.

      • Concerned Taxpayer

        You don't think $5.5 billion in profits (more than places that pay 3 times that much) is enough to pay workers a living wage?!? What world are you living in? Lack of density doesn't increase demand, per se. A specious argument, at best. Stop apologizing for the tax-dodging billionaires, please. Thanks.

        • Realist

          What I was discussing is a lack of supply. If all of the things people claim would happen with higher paid workers were true, do you really think all of these "greedy" businessmen would pass on an opportunity to improve profitability by paying someone more money to work for them? What world are you living in? Specious? It's great that you have a vocabulary, but you should work on your reading comprehension and realize that you completely missed what my argument was. As for the "tax-dodging" billionaires, please realize that they pay a much larger amount that you ever have or probably will in your life time. What makes you think that wealthy people owe anything to you?

        • Realist

          Also, I am not sure what company your referring to that makes less but pays more, but I can bet that their employees jobs consist of more than asking what kind of drink you want with your meal and if you would like to add an apple pie for $1.

  • Nicole

    I don't feel they should get paid 15$. Maybe 10$. I went to school for 4 yrs and got a career job. Fast food is a JOB. Anyone can do it.

  • Scott Nelson

    Any adult working at a fast food joint gets no sympathy from me. Minimum wage jobs are in fact entry level positions, attractive

    to teenagers, or should be. If anyone thinks raising the mini

    Um wage to $15 an hour is going to change one’s life for the better, I’be got news; should they get an increase, they won’t be able to AFFORD going to Mc Donald’s, as the cost of doing business will be met with higher burger prices. As adults, you’d think they’d understand that. But no. They’re not smart enough to figure that one out. Hence, they hold minimum wage jobs. Besides, I can’t count how many times I’ve watched an adult working the counter screw up a hamburger order. As a matter of fact; when I walk into a fast food joint and an adult is at the counter, I walk away. True story. Teenagers are smarter at the counter. And who really wants to

    • Concerned Taxpayer

      Spoken like a true, privileged white male. Congrats, Scott! You're another apologist for tax-dodging billionaires who are destroying our country and killing what's left of the middle class. You don't think $5.5 billion in profits (more than places that pay 3 times that much) is enough to pay workers a living wage?!? What world are you living in? Lack of density doesn't increase demand, per se. A specious argument, at best. Stop apologizing for the tax-dodging billionaires, please. Thanks.

  • navydude1986

    They only want $15 an hour so they can buy a new iphone and pay their huge cellphone bill! Fast Food isn't/wasn't meant for you to retire on after 20 years. It was to gain experience and a little pocket change. Everyone wants to make 30-40k, get full on medical benefits and a house on a hill.

    If you want all these things, there's a program you can volunteer for…. as long as you meet their requirements, I'm sure a Army/Navy/Air Force/Marine or Coast Guard recruiter will sign you up!! Free medical, Free schooling, Free Dental, 30 days paid vacation a year and you'll make MORE than minimum wage. Oh…you want to be choosy? Hey the fries need to taken out the grease! Either take your $7.25 or leave it. There's a high school student who'll take it.

  • Guest

    How about $20.00 an hour for all clerks in convenience stores that take your money so you can pump your own gasoline! The Gas Companies have more money than they know what to do with.

    • Concerned Taxpayer

      Yes, exactly why they should be paying their clerks a LIVING WAGE! THESE OIL COMPANIES (and Fast food companies alike) are ALL SCREWING US OVER AND WE KEEP CONSUMING THEIR PRODUCTS AND DEMONIZING THE WORKERS INSTEAD OF THE GREEDY BILLIONAIRES WHO CAUSED THE RECESSION!!!

  • riversideliberal

    As many have noted above, millions of minimum wage workers are supporting themselves, and many also have children. The notion that minimum wage workers are teens buying gum and concert tickets is just silly. — Look around the next time you're at a restaurant or a big-box store: many of the workers are over 25, plenty over 35. They're adults trying to live on what they earn. — And the minimum wage has dropped about a third in the last 30 years, relative to inflation. — I was broke on minimum wage in 1980, but someone earning the "same" wage now is much, much poorer. — Also, fast food and the big-box stores are posting profits in the BILLIONS, so they could raise wages without raising prices even a penny. Or, heck, raise prices a few cents here and there; we wouldn't notice if our burgers went up 5 cents and our t-shirts went up 20 cents.

    Boosting the income of the poorest workers, and letting them participate in the economy as consumers, would boost the economy tremendously. Plus, it's only fair.

    • Guest

      Or….the government could reduce taxes, heck they have billions they give to other countries, why not help their own citizens?

  • Guest

    Well if they get it or not, I guess it means we don't bus our own tables at MacD's or anywhere else, let the fast food techs bus the tables. Welcome to our world.

  • John Doe

    Fast food workers demanding 15 dollars an hour? What a joke.

    Tell me, why should I have to pay taxes to support the welfare state? Why should I HAVE TO PAY FOR YOUR MISTAKES???

    If you cannot afford to have children, THEN DO NOT HAVE CHILDREN!!!!!!!!!!

    Sterilize all people on welfare. Problem solved immediately.

  • Alex HAuber

    So we have People working for McDonalds Complaining and asking for 15 $ per Hour. Seriously. Flipping Burgers warrants $15 Dollars but Dying for your Country is below Minimum Wage. Our Soldiers, Marines, Airman(Woman) and Navy make less then the average Person. And the Damn Unions try to get into the Fast Food industry to get Rich. So the Workers @ MC Donalds why don't you watch this Video and if your Sacrifice is as Big as the Members of our Military then i will agree to your $15 Dollars an Hour

  • Esther

    I am shocked as I am reading these comments of people believing that people CHOOSE to work at fast food restaurants. When someone is born underprivileged and poor, they don't have the same opportunities as the upper class to be able to obtain an education that will allow them to obtain a high paying job. Society keeps the poor poor and the rich rich. Just because someone is 30 years old and working at Mcdonalds, doesn't mean they are stupid, they just don't have the same opportunities as others. Fast food jobs have become the only jobs the underprivileged can obtain with no experience or further education. They can't get any other job because all employers want EXPERIENCE and EDUCATION; which they can't obtain because they don't have any money to fund their education.These people are not lazy, they are working and trying to survive. Also, if you have never worked in a fast food restaurant, you have no right to comment since you have no idea of the amount of hard labor that is required to work at a fast food restaurant.

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