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Thread: The Fast Food Strike On August 29th

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  1. #11
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    http://www.alipac.us/f9/%2416-88-minimum-wage-285809/

    The U.S. has a $7.25 minimum wage. Australia’s is $16.88


    Minimum wage advocates love to point to Australia’s $16.88 an hour minimum as evidence that a very high wage floor needn’t stifle a country’s growth. After all, Australia hasn’t had a recession in 20 years.
    Last edited by JohnDoe2; 08-28-2013 at 06:36 PM.
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  2. #12
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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  3. #13
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Fast-food strikes set for cities nationwide

    By CANDICE CHOI and KAREN MATTHEWS Associated PressPosted: 08/28/2013 02:43:19 PM MDT Updated: 41 min. ago

    FILE - In this Tuesday, July 30, 2013 file... ((AP Photo/Belleville News-Democrat, Derik Holtmann))


    NEW YORK—Fast-food customers in search of burgers and fries on Thursday might run into striking workers instead.

    Organizers say thousands of fast-food workers are set to stage walkouts in dozens of cities around the country, part of a push to get chains such as McDonald's, Taco Bell and Wendy's to pay workers higher wages.

    It's expected be the largest nationwide strike by fast-food workers, according to organizers. The biggest effort so far was over the summer when about 2,200 of the nation's millions of fast-food workers staged a one-day strike in seven cities.

    Thursday's planned walkouts follow a series of strikes that began last November in New York City, then spread to cities including Chicago, Detroit and Seattle.

    Workers say they want $15 an hour, which would be about $31,000 a year for full-time employees. That's more than double the federal minimum wage, which many fast food workers make, of $7.25 an hour, or $15,000 a year.

    The move comes amid calls from the White House, some members of Congress and economists to hike the federal minimum wage, which was last raised in 2009.

    But most proposals seek a far more modest increase than the ones workers are asking for, with President Barack Obama wanting to boost it to $9 an hour.

    The push has brought considerable media attention to a staple of the fast-food industry—the so-called "McJobs" that are known for their low pay and limited prospects. But the workers taking part in the strikes still represent a tiny fraction of the broader industry.

    And it's not clear if the strikes on Thursday will shut down any restaurants because organizers made their plans public earlier in a call for workers around the country to participate, which gave managers time to adjust their staffing levels. More broadly, it's not clear how many customers are aware of the movement, with turnout for past strikes relatively low in some cities.

    Laila Jennings, a 29-year-old sales associate at T.J. Maxx, was eating at a McDonald's in New York City this week and said she hadn't heard of the movement. Still, she said she thinks workers should be paid more. "They work on their feet all day," Jennings said, adding that $12 to $15 an hour seemed fair.

    As it stands, fast-food workers say they can't live on what they're paid.

    Shaniqua Davis, 20, lives in the Bronx with her boyfriend, who is unemployed, and their 1-year-old daughter. Davis has worked at a McDonald's a few blocks from her apartment for the past three months, earning $7.25 an hour. Her schedule varies, but she never gets close to 40 hours a week. "Forty? Never. They refuse to let you get to that (many) hours."

    Her weekly paycheck is $150 or much lower. "One of my paychecks, I only got $71 on there. So I wasn't able to do much with that. My daughter needs stuff, I need to get stuff for my apartment," said Davis, who plans to take part in the strike Thursday.

    She pays the rent with public assistance but struggles to afford food, diapers, subway and taxi fares, cable TV and other expenses with her paycheck.

    "It's really hard," she said. "If I didn't have public assistance to help me out, I think I would have been out on the street already with the money I make at McDonald's."

    McDonald's Corp. and Burger King Worldwide Inc. say that they don't make decisions about pay for the independent franchisees that operate the majority of their U.S. restaurants.

    For the restaurants it does own, McDonald's said in a statement that pay starts at minimum wage but the range goes higher, depending on the employee's position and experience level. It said that raising entry-level wages would mean higher overall costs, which could result in higher prices on menus.

    "That would potentially have a negative impact on employment and business growth in our restaurants, as well as value for our customers," the company said in a statement.

    The Wendy's Co. and Yum Brands Inc., which owns KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, did not respond to a request for comment.

    The National Restaurant Association says the low wages reflect the fact that most fast-food workers tend to be younger and have little work experience. Scott DeFife, a spokesman for the group, says that doubling wages would hurt job creation, noting that fast-food chains are already facing higher costs for ingredients, as well as new regulations that will require them to pay more in health care costs.

    Still, the actions are striking a chord in some corners.

    Robert Reich, a worker advocate and former Labor Secretary in the Clinton administration, said that the struggles of living on low wages is hitting close to home for many because of the weak economic climate.

    "More and more, people are aware of someone either in their wider circle of friends or extended family who has fallen on hard times," Reich said.

    Mary Kay Henry, president of the Service Employees International Union, which is providing the fast-food strikes with financial support and training, said the actions in recent months show that fast-food workers can be mobilized, despite the industry's relatively higher turnover rates and younger age.
    "The reality has totally blown through the obstacles," she said.
    http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_23965637/fast-food-strikes-set-cities-nationwide
    Last edited by JohnDoe2; 08-28-2013 at 07:50 PM.
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  4. #14
    Senior Member Reciprocity's Avatar
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    First, Fast Food joints at one time were basically summer or part time jobs for Teenagers. These jobs allowed teenagers to put a few bucks in their pockets for summer things like Movies, Theme Parks, some saved the money for a cheap first car etc. These jobs were never meant as a support mechanism for a whole family. Second, who the hell are these illegal immigrants to demand anything from US Companies, including the SEIU. $15.00 an hour for job with no skills, yea, hold your breath morons you in for a rude shock...laughs.
    “In questions of power…let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.” –Thomas Jefferson

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  6. #16
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    Teen employment hits record lows, suggesting lost generation

    Published: August 29, 2013 Updated 7 hours ago
    2013-08-30T09:41:31Z By Kevin G. Hall McClatchy_Newspapers

    The U.S. teen employment rate has dropped from about 60% to 32.3% since 1999.
    MCCLATCHY/TRIBUNE — McClatchy/Tribune

    By Kevin G. Hall — McClatchy Washington Bureau

    WASHINGTON — For the fourth consecutive summer, teen employment has stayed anchored around record lows, prompting experts to fear that a generation of youth is likely to be economically stunted with lower earnings and opportunities in years ahead.

    The trend is all the more striking given that the overall unemployment rate has steadily dropped, to 7.4 percent in August. And employers in recent months have been collectively adding almost 200,000 new jobs a month. It led to hopes that this would be the summer when teen employment improved.

    In 1999, slightly more than 52 percent of teens 16 to 19 worked a summer job. By this year, that number had plunged to about 32.25 percent over June and July. It means that slightly more than three in 10 teens actually worked a summer job, out of a universe of roughly 16.8 million U.S. teens.

    “We have never had anything this low in our lives. This is a Great Depression for teens, and no time in history have we encountered anything like that,” said Andrew Sum, director of the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University in Boston. “That’s why it’s such an important story.”

    Summer is traditionally the peak period of employment for teens as they are off from school and get their first brush with employment and the responsibilities that come with it. Falling teen employment, however, is just as striking in the 12-month numbers over the past decade.

    The picture these teen employment statistics provide looks even worse when viewed through the complex prism of race. Sum and colleagues did just that, comparing June and July 2000 and the same two months of 2013. In 2000, 61.28 percent of white teens 16 to 19 held a job, a number that fell to 39.25 percent this summer. For African-Americans, a number that was dismal in 2000, 33.91 percent of 16 to 19 year olds holding a job, fell to a staggering low of 19.25 percent this June and July.

    It wasn’t terribly better for Hispanics, who saw the percentage of employed teens fall from 40.31 percent in the two-month period of 2000 to 26.7 percent in June and July 2013.

    One of the more surprising findings of Sum’s research is that teens whose parents were wealthy were more likely to have a job than those whose parents had less income. Some 46 percent of white male teens whose parents earned between $100,000 and $149,000 held a job this summer, compared with just 9.1 percent of black male teens whose family income was below $20,000 and 15.2 percent for Hispanic teen males with that same low family income.

    That finding is important because a plethora of research shows that teens who work do better in a wide range of social and economic indicators. The plunging teen employment rate is likely to mean trouble for this generation of young workers of all races.

    “Kids that get work experience when they are 17 or 18 end up graduating from college at a higher rate,” said Michael Gritton, executive director of the Workforce Investment Board, which promotes job creation and teen employment in Louisville, Ky., and six surrounding counties. “There are economic returns to those young people because they get a chance to work. Almost every person you ask remembers their first job because they started to learn things from the world of work that they can’t learn in the classroom.”

    The teen employment numbers are calculated from the Current Population Survey, carried out by the Census Bureau for the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics. This survey of households is used in determining estimates for the size of the civilian workforce, the number of employed nationally and the unemployment rate.

    Unemployment data is calculated in a different fashion, and while it tells a similar story of hardship for teens, it is not considered by researchers to be as accurate as the employment data because it underestimates the severity of the slow economy.

    The weak employment numbers sometimes prompt a mistaken narrative that younger workers are just staying in college longer rather than entering the workforce, or are going on to graduate school given the impaired jobs market.

    “I think there is this myth out there that there is some silver lining for young people, that they are going on to college. . . . You don’t see an increase in enrollment rates over and above the long-term trend. You can’t see a Great Recession blip,” said Heidi Scheirholz, a labor economist at the liberal Economic Policy Institute, a research group. “They are not in school. There’s been a huge spike in the not-in-school, not employed. It’s just a huge missed opportunity.”

    Even before the economic crisis exploded in the summer of 2008, workers ages 16 to 19 made up a declining share of the overall workforce, in part because of a decades-long climb in college enrollment, and in part because universities now place less importance on work and more on life experiences and community service.

    But most of this decline in youth in the workforce is
    thought to be the result of the severe economic crisis and its aftermath, with older workers taking the jobs of teens.

    “People entering into the labor force in their 20s, it looks like more and more now they’re not going to have any work experience as teens. Labor force participation is as low as it’s ever been,” said Keith Hall, who served as commissioner of the Bureau of Labor Statistics from 2008 to 2012.

    Hall points to a troubling trend within an already worrisome statistic. Because of the so-called Great Recession and the sluggish growth that’s followed, middle-age and older workers are not moving up the career ladder. The natural order of career progression has been stunted.

    “I think that means that a lot of workers aren’t advancing through their careers,” he said. “Younger workers aren’t going to be progressing through their careers as they did before.”

    http://www.fresnobee.com/2013/08/29/3468433/teen-employment-hits-record-lows.html
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  7. #17
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Wal-Mart wage bill in D.C. heads for mayor’s desk

    Gray still mum on whether to sign it

    By Tom Howell Jr. and Andrea Noble
    The Washington Times
    Thursday, August 29, 2013

    A “living wage” bill that has sparked a running tiff between Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and D.C. lawmakers is expected to reach the desk of Mayor Vincent C. Gray on Friday.

    Passed by an 8-5 vote more than six weeks ago, the legislation would force retailers occupying in excess of 75,000 square feet or parent companies that gross $1 billion or more to pay their employees a minimum of $12.50 an hour in wages and benefits. The current rate is $8.25.

    Karen Sibert, spokeswoman for D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson, said the bill is “going to be delivered to the mayor” Friday.

    Mr. Gray’s receipt of the bill will begin a 10-day window during which he can veto or sign the legislation, which won final passage July 10.

    The president of one of the nation’s top union groups said Thursday that Mr. Gray should sign the bill.

    “He ought to sign the bill — plain and simple,” AFL-CIO President Richard L. Trumka said during a wide-ranging interview hosted by the Christian Science Monitor in downtown Washington. “It’s a great piece of legislation.”

    But Wal-Mart, the D.C. Republican Party and others have urged Mr. Gray, a Democrat, to veto the Large Retailer Accountability Act.

    Asked about the high-profile bill, Mr. Trumka looked around the table and asked how many people at the breakfast resided in the nation’s capital, which has a high cost of living.

    “How many of you can live on 12.50 an hour and raise a family?” he asked.

    While the legislation, if enacted, would not affect such large grocers as Giant Food and Safeway, it would affect new big box chains, such as Lowe’s, Shopper’s Food Warehouse, Wegmans and Wal-Mart, and retailers that are not unionized.

    Wal-Mart informed D.C. officials in January that it would not build three of six proposed D.C. stores and that plans for the remaining three stores could be jeopardized if the legislation becomes law.

    The standoff has put Mr. Gray in a tough spot, since he is considered an ally of labor unions but also enticed Wal-Mart to build the stores — including two in Ward 7, where he lives. He has given no indication of what he plans to do.

    The Arkansas-based retail behemoth agreed to come to the District after a lengthy deliberation process and various demands by city officials, who want to make sure D.C. residents obtain jobs at the new stores.

    Unemployment can reach more than 20 percent in the city’s eastern wards, which at times have been dubbed “food deserts” because of their lack of eateries and options for buying nutritious food.

    While the city waits a resolution, Wal-Mart’s public relations team has sent out near-daily emails to tout the company’s stores and protest the living-wage bill.

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/...#ixzz2dTnzfxt3
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