Monday, November 19, 2012

WIN: Hundreds of Chicago low wage workers form new union

By Doug Cunningham

Hundreds of low-wage food and retail workers in Chicago today launched a new union called the Workers Organizing Committee of Chicago as they rallied to push for a $15 an hour wage and a union contract. 
Two hundred worker leaders from 100 stores held a founding convention for the new union, then rallied and marched through Chicago’s Magnificent Mile. Satoria Briggs spoke with Workers Independent News via cell phone form the rally in Chicago. Briggs stated: 
I mean I just feel like it’s time the 99 percent to stand up. It’s time that we stop sitting there and just accepting what is thrown in our laps. Because at the end of the day we’re the ones working the long hours, tired, beat, hungry. And you know, it’s a shame that I can work a week’s pay – work for a week – and I can’t even make it to the next week. We have a worker here who’s worked 26 years at McDonald’s and still makes $8.25 an hour.
The workers say their “Fight For $15” hopefully will bring more scrutiny to the impact low wage jobs have on families and communities nationwide. 

Wages are now so low for millions of workers around the country that they are below the poverty line. 

A recent report written by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Dr. Mark Doussard says 31.2 percent of workers aged 18-64 in Chicago are working in low-wage jobs.

Rightardia is sympathetic. Retail is notorious for low wage part-time jobs with no benefits This is case of the fast food industry as well.

The Walton family who founded Walmart and Sam's Club makes as much income as the bottom 30 per cent of Americans. 

John Schnatter of Papa John's infamy, lives in a 40,000 square foot castle like a feudal prince. 

Because retail and fast food wages are so low, many people who work in these industries qualify for Medicaid and and SNAP (food stamps). So the federal government and the taxpayers ends up subsidizing these workers. 

The right wing will scream about ending welfare and getting people off of the plantation, but this isn't a welfare problem. It is a corporate greed problem. T

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