Thousands are planning to march on McDonald's in Chicago on Tuesday evening, demanding $15 an hour and union rights from the fast food giant they've dubbed "the Donald Trump of corporations."
As Common Dreams reported, the march from Chicago's Trump Tower to the city's Rock N' Roll McDonald's joins two mass movements: the one opposed to the corporate-friendly Trump administration, and the one that's been scoring victories for low-wage workers nationwide since its inception in 2012.
"Like Trump, McDonald's faces widespread charges of stealing from workers' paychecks, sexually harassing women, ripping off taxpayers, and firing people for speaking out," organizers said in a press statement. This week, they continued, "[w]orkers and leaders from across the progressive movement will stress that resistance to Trump's agenda must include resistance to companies like McDonald's that are 'the Donald Trump of corporations'."
As Missouri McDonald's cashier Kenya Banks, who rode a bus eight hours to take part in Tuesday's protest, wrote at Civil Eats: "[A]s I march on McDonald’s, it won't just be for me. It will be for all the Americans who dream of a world where everyone from CEOs to President Trump give workers a fair shot. It will be for a world where the economy isn’t rigged to only benefit the rich. It will be for a world where working for one of the richest corporations means you'll never wind up homeless."
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Tuesday's demonstration will be followed Wednesday morning by a rally and protest outside the McDonald's shareholder meeting in Oak Brook, Illinois. Solidarity events are also taking place across the country on Wednesday.
Earlier Tuesday, fast food workers and community members gathered in Chicago's West Loop neighborhood for a mock groundbreaking ceremony at the future site of McDonald's new headquarters. Sharing their vision for what a "new" McDonald's would look like, they staked signs into the ground that read, "Pays $15," "Says No to Sexual Harassment," and "Pays Its Taxes."
"We need a McDonald’s that pays us a living wage," said Ashley Bruce, a Fight for $15 leader and McDonald's worker of 4 years. "We need $15 an hour to sustain our families. We can't keep trying to make ends meet like this. This is not working for us. We deserve to live. We're barely making it on $10.50 an hour."