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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
Southern California

Fast Food Workers Hold Strike to Increase Minimum Wage

ATVN's Faith Miller reports. 

Fast food workers staged a strike Thursday in downtown Los Angeles to protest the current minimum wage. The Los Angeles protest was scheduled as part of more than 100 other protests nationwide.

Organizers say they want to raise the current minimum wage in Los Angeles from $9 an hour to $15 an hour. The Service Employees International Union and other unions took part. 

“Rolling strikes” occurred at different fast food chains across the country. Other low-wage employees also joined in the protests throughout the day.

Protestors at previous demonstrations have said that workers who earn an average of $9 an hour “struggle to make ends meet.”

But Steve Calderia, president and CEO of the International Franchise Association, says that the strikes might end up doing more harm than good.

“What unions don’t seem to understand, or want to accept, is that the brand company has absolutely nothing to do with setting wages up,” Calderia said in a statement.

“These protests are really harming the very same workers the labor unions are claiming to help.”

Fast food workers in San Francisco and Seattle earn $15 an hour, and the Los Angeles workers hope to make this the universal minimum wage.

The Los Angeles City Council is considering a proposal, which would raise the minimum wage to $15.25 by 2019, according to a press release. But an analysis of this proposal will not be completed until February 2015.

Fast food workers also protested earlier this year in May and September.

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