Karesha Manns is a McDonalds worker in Memphis, Tennessee and a leader with the Fight for $15 and a Union who supports her 1-year-old daughter on pay of simply $10 an hour. She is setting in motion with thousands across the country to demand McDonalds pay their workers at least $15 an hour and to call for a federal base pay of $15 an hour.
And as President-elect Joe Biden prepares to take workplace, were urging the countrys leaders to pass a $15 minimum wage in the very first 100 days of the new administration.Fast-food employees have been on the frontlines of the COVID crisisOver the previous year, fast-food cooks and cashiers have been on the frontlines of the COVID-19 crisis, risking our lives to continue serving hamburgers and fries without access to sufficient PPE and other standard protections.Even as companies like McDonalds have actually offered out billions of dollars to shareholders, employees like me have actually continued to make earnings that put us below the hardship line. Raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour would increase incomes for almost 40% of Black workers, and overall more than 23 million Americans would see their income grow. Its not enough to return to a status quo that left Black and brown workers vulnerable to the worst impacts of the infection, with the federal government stopping working to take adequate action to secure all employees. Im drawing on the strength of the Brown and black workers who turned out in record numbers to offer Joe Biden and Kamala Harris the mandate to meet their campaign guarantee of a $15 minimum wage.And Im standing on the shoulders of the Black sanitation workers in Memphis who stood with Dr. Martin Luther King to combat for justice, comprehending that there can be no racial justice without economic justice. As we commemorate Dr. Kings tradition, fast-food workers are taking the minute to speak up and make our demand for $15 heard from coast to coast.
I make simply $10 an hour working at McDonalds in Memphis, and its no place near sufficient to cover basic needs on a monthly basis for me and my baby daughter..
A federal minimum wage of $15 an hour would assist keep a roof over our heads and put food on the table.
This would increase earnings for almost 40% percent of Black workers, and in general more than 23 million Americans would see their earnings grow.
Karesha Manns is a McDonalds worker in Memphis, Tennessee and a leader with the Fight for $15 movement.
This is a viewpoint column. The thoughts expressed are those of the author.
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In Martin Luther King Jr.s final speech, delivered while he was in Memphis to support Black sanitation employees striking for better working conditions, he stated that “weve got to give ourselves to this battle up until completion.” He was killed the next day, but his defend racial and economic justice– consisting of a fair, habitable wage for all working individuals– didnt end with his death. It continues today, on what would be his 92nd birthday, as I accompany fast-food employees around the nation to go on strike for a $15 an hour wage. Throughout more than 15 cities, from here in Memphis, to Detroit, to Durham, North Carolina, and beyond, fast-food cooks and cashiers are striking today to require that employers like McDonalds pay us $15 an hour due to the fact that we cant make ends fulfill and provide for our families on anything less. And as President-elect Joe Biden prepares to take office, were advising the countrys leaders to pass a $15 minimum wage in the very first 100 days of the brand-new administration.Fast-food employees have actually been on the frontlines of the COVID crisisOver the previous year, fast-food cooks and cashiers have actually been on the frontlines of the COVID-19 crisis, risking our lives to continue serving hamburgers and fries without access to appropriate PPE and other fundamental protections.Even as business like McDonalds have provided out billions of dollars to investors, employees like me have actually continued to make salaries that put us below the hardship line. Weve enjoyed the infection devastate communities of color as the country considered systemic anti-Black racism. Business revenues continued to skyrocket.
Raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour would increase incomes for nearly 40% of Black workers, and overall more than 23 million Americans would see their income grow. That implies more cash in the pockets of customers to invest at regional businesses, which in turn will develop more good-paying jobs. And with over 30 million low-wage workers on public help at an annual public expense of $107 billion, the federal government could conserve taxpayers money by merely giving workers a raise. Moving on and dealing with workers betterWe are facing a turning point as we enter what will hopefully be the final months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Its inadequate to return to a status quo that left Black and brown workers susceptible to the worst impacts of the virus, with the federal government stopping working to take enough action to secure all employees. We need essential change to reword the guidelines of the economy and take apart systemic racism that has actually haunted us for generations. As I go on strike today, Im inspired by the memory of countless people flooding the streets last summer season to yell and march for racial justice. Im drawing on the strength of the Brown and black employees who ended up in record numbers to provide Joe Biden and Kamala Harris the required to fulfill their campaign promise of a $15 minimum wage.And Im standing on the shoulders of the Black sanitation employees in Memphis who stood with Dr. Martin Luther King to combat for justice, comprehending that there can be no racial justice without economic justice. As we celebrate Dr. Kings tradition, fast-food workers are taking the minute to speak out and make our demand for $15 spoken with coast to coast. We wont rest till we win a much better future for our families and all working individuals.
I make simply $10 an hour operating at McDonalds in Memphis, and its nowhere near enough to cover fundamental necessities each month for me and my baby child. I havent even had the ability to furnish my apartment or condo, because every cent of every paycheck has to go towards keeping a roofing over our heads and putting food on the table. I cant consider buying a sofa when I can barely afford a house. Thats why I see myself in the Memphis sanitation employees who rallied here along with Dr. King over half a century earlier. I understand that our battles are connected due to the fact that their battle wont be complete up until this nation has actually achieved racial justice and economic justice– and due to the fact that till our Black communities can thrive, no neighborhood can thrive. Dr. King comprehended that a livable wage is among the most effective ways to raise every community and reduce racial inequality. Ahead of the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, Dr. King and his co-organizers released a set of 10 needs, including a demand for” [a] nationwide minimum wage act that will offer all Americans a decent standard of life.” Years later on, Congress met their demand and raised the minimum wage, which experts have actually found resulted in a 20% drop in income inequality for Black Americans. But today, our nations leaders have actually left the base pay at $7.25 for more than 10 years, while the expense of living has escalated.