WASHINGTON DC - During the nationwide fast food worker walkout Thursday, Illinois Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (IL-09) picketed at Chicago's Rock 'n Roll McDonald's before heading off to the nation's capital, to demand a $15 per hour minimum wage there, too. Not only were the workers pushing for their wages to double, they were also demanding the right to unionize.
Outside the Smithsonian Institute's McDonald's, one worker said she's now seeing a therapist because her job pays only $8.25 an hour.
“I’m hurting. I’m crying in my heart, my kids are starving. $8.25 is not enough to live in D.C., or anywhere for that matter, when the cost of living is constantly going up,” she said. The $8.25 she makes at McDonald’s is not enough for her to support her two children. “I live in Capitol Hill and my rent is $1050. I work my butt off at work for a $300 check that I can’t even use to pay my rent. So, it’s saddening. It’s depressing, I’m seeing a therapist. It’s just a lot.”
Think Progress reports the D.C. workers were joined by several Members of Congress, including Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL):
“We had a conversation last election about the makers and the takers, about the 1 percent and the 99 percent, and Barack Obama won that election,” she said. “They can be the makers if they have money in their pockets!”
Think Progress writes: Schakowsky alludes to a very simple reality: it’s middle-class consumers, not the wealthy, who are America’s real job creators. Putting more money into the pockets of workers so they can buy things from businesses large and small creates a virtuous circle that grows our economy from the middle class out, not the top down.