Fast Food Indig-Nation and
The People Vs. Corporate Goliaths
They stand behind cash registers, ready to take orders from customers who approach the counters. They cook burgers far back in the kitchens out of the public’s sight. For a low wage they endure irate customers, wafts of greasy steam and little, or no, benefits. Most of their workday is spent on their feet, cleaning and emptying trash receptacles. Mopping and sweeping floors.
For their small paychecks, they work hard to support themselves and their families. With few exceptions, the fast food employees I have encountered have been pleasant and courteous. They do their jobs well. And they deserve to be paid more!
These days, however, a tempest appears to be brewing on the rough seas at fast food restaurants; their employees are beginning to stand up to the companies they work for. There is anger, an outcry for better working conditions, starting with higher wages and the right to unionize. Fast food indig-Nation is being felt in cities across America! Low-wages are an injustice their workers are no longer willing to accept. $8.25 per hour is inadequate for paying for the necessities of life, such as, rent, utilities and groceries.
Life for a minimum – wage family is unbearable. The fast food industry must pay their workers more! Otherwise, fast food indig-Nation will continue to spread and intensify.
It was us versus corporate Goliaths. Our message was delivered with passion and one voice. We called on mega-companies to make their low-wage workers low-wage no more. No worker should hold down three jobs and, yet, live in poverty. They should be able to pay their rent and utilities, and feed their families; not be kept on the last rung of the economic ladder.
Representing the organization ONE Northside (of which Immanuel is a member), on April 15 I marched and heard testimonies and calls for higher wages. Thousands of Chicagoans partnered in this national rally held at University of Illinois. We shouted and chanted our message–that corporate America do the right thing by paying their workers $15 per hour and treating them with dignity! Fast food companies make billions of dollars selling burgers and french fries. They can afford to give bigger paychecks to those who cook, clean and take customers’ orders.
We marched to put corporate Goliaths on notice: Their irresponsible treatment of their workforce is WRONG, and must cease! With one voice, we demanded not a minimum wage, but a fair and living wage for hardworking Americans across the country.
The time has come for ordinary Americans to stand up for low-wage earners! The time is NOW!