Fast-Food and Retail Workers Urged to Strike Aug. 29

Organizing groups push for $15-per-hour minimum wage

NEW YORK -- Fast-food and retail workers from eight cities Monday called on low-wage workers around the country to join them in a national day of strikes on Thursday, Aug. 29.

The workers, who in recent months have been standing up for higher wages and “going on strike for a better future for their families and communities,” are fighting for a $15-an-hour minimum wage and the right to form a union without retaliation or unfair labor practices.

“If you work in a fast food or retail store anywhere in the country, we urge you to join our growing movement,” said Terrance Wise, a 34-year old father of three who earns $9.30 an hour after eight years at Burger King and $7.47 at Pizza Hut in Kansas City. “Get together with some or all of your coworkers and make plans to take to the streets on Aug. 29. Encourage your friends, family and neighbors to do the same. The more of us who go on strike that day, the louder our message will be that it is not right for companies making billions in profits to pay their workers pennies.”

The pre-Labor Day strike is expected to hit major national fast-food companies like McDonald’s, Burger King and Wendy’s. Retail workers at stores such as Macy’s, Sears and Dollar Tree are expected to join the strikes in some cities.

"The fast-food restaurant industry is terrified that these [strikes] will spread to other cities," Wall Street Journal editorial board member Steve Moore said in an interview last week on WSJ Live.

The strike will take place the day after the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, which sought to "give all Americans a decent standard of living" and called for a minimum wage of $2 per hour. Adjusted for inflation, that would equal $15.26 an hour today, according to strike organizers.

The workers who issued the Aug. 29 strike call are part of Fast Food Forward, Fight for 15, STL Can't Survive on $7.35, D-15, Raise up Milwaukee, Strike Poverty-Raise Seattle, Stand Up KC and Flint-15.