Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Fast food workers walked off the job on Saturday before protesting outside the GOP debate in Manchester, NH. (Photo: Fight for $15/Twitter)

Fast food workers walked off the job on Saturday before protesting outside the GOP debate in Manchester, NH. (Photo: Fight for $15/Twitter)

Ahead of Primary, NH Workers Declare: Want My Vote? Raise the Wage!

Fast food workers walk off the job before protesting at the GOP debate in Manchester

Lauren McCauley

Want my vote? Then raise the wage.

That's the message that low wage workers in New Hampshire sent to the presidential contenders on Saturday when fast food employees and others walked off the job days before the state's pivotal primary election.

"I’ve never walked off the job before, but I can’t wait any longer for fair pay," said Megan Jensen, a mother and KFC employee who lives off of $8 an hour. Jensen said that this is also the first year she plans to vote in the state's February 9th primary. 

"Everyone deserves at least $15 an hour and the right to a union," Jensen continued, "and candidates who are flying into New Hampshire this week need to know that we are taking this demand to the polls."

After the strike, which was held in Manchester, New Hampshire's largest city, workers from McDonald’s, KFC, Wendy’s and other chains will join other underpaid workers from across the state to protest outside the GOP debate Saturday evening.

Organizers with the national Fight for $15 movement are expecting a "massive" turnout at the first fast food worker action in the state. "Wherever 2016 candidates go this election season, fast-food and other underpaid workers are following to demand $15/hour and union rights," stated the group, which is backed by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). A similar action was held in Iowa ahead of last month's Republican debate there.

None of the Republican candidates have come out in favor of a $15 minimum wage. Hillary Clinton advocates for a national $12 minimum wage, though says she supports local efforts to raise the wage to $15.

Calling for nothing less than "fifteen bucks and a union," Sen. Bernie Sanders joined striking workers during a rally in Washington, D.C. in November. During his speech, he credited the Fight for $15 movement with local wage victories across the country.

"What you are doing and workers all over the United States are doing, you are having a profound impact," Sanders said. "People are raising the minimum wage to 15 bucks an hour. And you know who started it? You did. You started the movement."

Updates on the New Hampshire protest are being shared online with the hashtag #Fightfor15.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

... We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

GOP 'Silence Speaks Volumes,' Says Ilhan Omar as Boebert's Bigotry Goes Unpunished

"Normalizing this bigotry not only endangers my life but the lives of all Muslims. Anti-Muslim bigotry has no place in Congress."

Brett Wilkins ·


Africans Should Be 'Applauded, Not Punished,' Say Advocates Amid Omicron Travel Ban

"What is going on right now is inevitable," said African Union Vaccine Delivery Alliance co-chair Dr. Ayoade Alakija. "It's a result of the world's failure to vaccinate in an equitable, urgent, and speedy manner."

Brett Wilkins ·


Biden Drilling Report Blasted as 'Shocking Capitulation to the Needs of Corporate Polluters'

"Greenlighting more fossil fuel extraction, then pretending it's OK by nudging up royalty rates, is like rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic," said one campaigner.

Jessica Corbett ·


UNESCO Members Adopt First Global AI Ethics Agreement 'To Benefit Humanity'

"We're at a critical juncture in history," said Ethics in Tech founder Vahid Razavi. "We need as humans to come together and decide what is the best course of action to take with these technologies before they surpass us in their abilities."

Brett Wilkins ·


Progressive US Lawmakers Mark Black Friday With Calls to Pass the PRO Act

"The right to organize, fight for better working conditions, and fair pay must always be protected."

Jessica Corbett ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo