McDonalds employees from the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum plan to walk off the job Thursday morning, joining fast-food workers in 100 U.S. cities demonstrating for better pay.
The strikes are part of a growing movement this year from community organizers, local politicians and national unions to mandate a “living wage” of at least $15 an hour.
In August, fast-food and retail workers held walkouts in eight cities as part of a national day of strikes for low-wage employees. A string of demonstrations also took place in Washington, D.C. last spring and summer with non-government employees who work for vendors at federal buildings.
Thursdays events are set to take place one day after President Obama urged Congress to raise the minimum wage during a speech on income inequality.
Good Jobs Nation, a group representing low-wage workers, is calling on the president to issue an executive order that would ensure companies doing business with the federal government “pay a decent wage and give workers a voice on the job,” according to a statement from the group.
Obama last month signaled support for a Democratic bill that would raise the federal pay threshold from its current $7.25 an hour to $10.10 an hour. Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) sponsored the legislation.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has promised a Senate vote on the measure by the end of the year, but the Republican-led House has made no indication that it will take up the matter.
In July, D.C. lawmakers approved a bill requiring certain large retailers to pay their employees 50 percent above the city’s minimum wage, ignoring threats from Wal-Mart that the law would jeopardize its plans for opening new stores in the district. D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray ultimately vetoed the measure.
The first two Wal-Marts in the nation’s capitol opened Wednesday morning on 8th Street NW in the NoMa neighborhood and on Georgia Avenue NW in Brightwood.
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