For five years, the “Fight for $15” movement has been lobbying McDonald’s to raise their minimum wage, and on Wednesday hundreds of the group’s supporters took that message right to the company’s door step.
The group, which has been active since 2012, held a march and protest near the fast food giant’s headquarters in Oak Brook on Wednesday as the company held its annual shareholders meeting on the campus.
Event organizers said that the movement has spurred $62 billion in wage hikes for 22 million underpaid workers since its inception in 2012, but it won’t stop pushing their message of a higher wage until everyone in the company has been taken care of.
“We just want an answer,” one employee said. “Your children can afford to live great lives while my three girls behind me are struggling. I’m currently evicted right now, but I’ll be back at work tonight at McDonald’s in Kansas City.”
In response to the protests, the company said that it has provided job training that has helped 17,000 workers over the last few years, and they’ve increased wages at corporate-owned stores across the country.
“We are America’s best first job,” a McDonald’s spokesperson told NBC 5’s Kye Martin. “In two years, more than 17,000 employees have participated in extended learning and bettered their lives.”
Despite the company’s efforts, its workers still want the restaurant chain to do more to help its lower level employees, and that was the big point of Wednesday’s march.
“We deserve dignity,” McDonald’s employee Betty Douglas said. “We deserve $15 an hour. I can’t even buy my son shoes. He deserves to be able to have some shoes on his feet. I’m sure the shareholders take care of their families.”