Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Kansas City fast-food workers will join national strike on August 29

Posted By on Wed, Aug 21, 2013 at 2:23 PM

Local fast food workers took up their protest signs at a job walk-out in late July.
  • Local fast-food workers took up their protest signs at a job walkout in late July.

A national strike - in the form of a one-day job walkout - of fast-food workers is scheduled for August 29, according to the hospitality trade magazine Nation's Restaurant News . The publication reported yesterday that "labor organizers are calling...to stage a day of strikes on August 29 in what could be the largest event in an ongoing campaign to pressure restaurant chains to raise wages."

Kansas City fast-food employees participated in a job walkout event in late July at several quick-service establishments on the Missouri side of the state line. The strikes were organized to coincide with similar walkouts in New York; Washington, D.C.; St. Louis; Milwaukee; and Detroit.

Strike organizers, including representatives of the Workers Organizing Committee of Kansas City, are seeking a minimum-wage increase to $15 an hour and the right for workers to form a union without retaliation.

Local attorney Gina Chiara, spokesperson for the Stand Up Kansas City campaign, says there will be a number of Kansas City fast-food workers participating in the August 29 walkout, but she can't say how many. "I'm sure we'll have at least as many as we did during the July strike," Chiara says. "But it's up to the individual workers to make the decision to walk off the job or not."

Chiara says the July strike in Kansas City was effective because of the media attention the walkout raised, as well as the attention from elected officials and community leaders.

"It raised a lot of public attention and national dialogue on an issue that deserves to have a place in the public forum," Chiara says.

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