13 Arrested at Hartford McDonalds Strike

In Hartford, Connecticut, police arrested 13 people for non-violent civil disobedience at a protest at a McDonalds restaurant September 4. The workers were asking for their wages to be raised to $15 an hour. Hartford is about half an hour from Springfield, Massachusetts by car, Amtrak, or Greyhound.

Around the USA on September 4, thousands of fast food workers went on strike, and about 500 were arrested.

The protesters included workers from other fast food restaurant chains. The average fast food worker in the USA makes about $9 an hour. That equals around $18,000 a year for full time work, with two weeks unpaid time off.

David Novak, the CEO of the company that owns KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut, was paid $22 million last year.

“Every man has a struggle, but I’m fighting to fix my struggle,” said Sal Lopez. He works for McDonalds in Hartford. “I’m going to fight corporate to fix my future. I’m going to stand proud for $15 and a union.”

Workers who join a union in the USA make an average of 27 percent higher wages. That's according to www.bls.gov.

Unionized workers are 60 percent more likely to have employer-provided pensions for retirement.

Non-union workers can be fired at any time for no reason. Most union contracts say that workers can only be fired for a good reason. If the boss and the worker disagree, a neutral third party decides.

Millions of workers in the USA are union members, including all the workers at UPS, Stop & Shop, and the food co-ops in Northampton, Greenfield, and Brattleboro.

Information about how to join a union, and how to support workers who are fighting for justice, is at www.jwj.org.

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