Dozens of workers gathered outside a Hartford McDonald's and rallied for higher wages on Thursday.
The national movement, "Fight for $15" has gained traction in California, New York and Pennsylvania with fast-food, childcare and home-care workers demanding higher wages.
Holding signs that read, “McJobs Cost Us All” and “McWages Hold Us All Back,” underpaid workers poured into Hartford streets Thursday, stressing – days ahead of Tax Day – that low wages and tax avoidance by companies like McDonald’s are holding back workers and communities across the country
Workers zeroed-in on McDonald’s because the world’s second-largest employer and the industry leader in the fast food and service economies is driving a race to the bottom that is undercutting wages across the economy and resulting in nearly 64 million workers being paid less than $15.
Protesters later marched into the McDonald's to demonstrate in front of management and staff in the restaurant.
“We need $15 too,” said Hartford worker Jessica Mitchell, who walked off the job and is paid just $9.60 an hour after over a year on the job. “If workers in New York and California and Pennsylvania can join together and win $15, we know we can win in Hartford, Connecticut and every other part of the country too.”
In a statement, a McDonald's spokesperson said "In addition to raising the minimum wage for employees at our company-owned restaurants, we also offer employees access to Archways to Opportunity, a set of programs McDonald's pays for which helps them earn a high school diploma and get needed tuition assistance so they can work toward earning a college degree."
A protest is planned later in the day at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford. It is scheduled to begin at 3:45 p.m.
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