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Protest Rocks Oakland McDonalds – Part of nationwide day of actions
by Jonathan Nack
Thursday Dec 5th, 2013 4:48 PM
Young workers celebrated and danced as much as they protested. They appeared excited to be coming together to organize.

Photo by Jonathan Nack
Protest at MCDonalds in Oakland for $15 minimum wage
December 5, 2013

Protest Rocks Oakland McDonalds – Part of nationwide day of actions

by Jonathan Nack
December 5, 2013

OAKLAND – A lively protest took over the parking lot of a McDonalds restaurant on Jackson Street in downtown Oakland today. The rally, which completely blocked the restaurant's drive through, demanded a $15 an hour minimum wage for fast-food workers.

Young workers celebrated and danced as much as they protested. They appeared excited to be coming together to organize.

The rally was part of a day of nationwide actions at McDonalds restaurants across the country. A reporter for the New York Times, Steven Grteenhouse, decribed today's actions as, “the biggest wave of job actions in the history of America’s fast-food industry.” [ http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/30/nyregion/fast-food-workers-in-new-york-city-rally-for-higher-wages.html ]

The nationwide actions were organized by Fast Food Forward, [ http://fastfoodforward.org/ ] a a joint effort by labor and community groups led by Service Employees International Union (SEIU). Demonstrations were planned for over one hundred cities.

In Oakland, the rally was mobilized for by East Bay Up the Pay, and was supported by labor groups such as SEIU Local 1021 and the East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Economy (EBASE)
[ http://workingeastbay.org/ ]; and community groups such as the Oakland chapter of the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE) [ http://www.calorganize.org/ ]

Despite the fact that the rally completely blocked the restaurant's drive through for more than an hour, police never came to clear it.

Fast Food Forward released a report on October 15, 2013 entitled, “The Public Cost of Low-wage Jobs in the Fast-Food Industry.” Among the report's findings were:

• Fast-food jobs pay so little that 52 percent of the families of front-line fast food workers need to rely on public assistance programs, costing taxpayers nearly $7 billion a year;

• Compared to the overall economy, fast-food jobs are twice as likely as other jobs to pay so little that workers are forced to rely on public assistance (52% versus 25%);

• Full-time jobs in the corporate fast-food industry do not pay enough for workers to get by. Even at 40 hours a week, more than half of front-line fast-food workers are forced to rely on public assistance to cover basic needs like food, rent and healthcare; and

• 67% of core front-line fast-food workers are adults 20 and older, and 68% are the main earners in their families. More than one-quarter are raising children.” [ http://fastfoodforward.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Cost-Fast-Food-Report-FINAL.pdf ]
§The rally completely blocked the drive thru.
by Jonathan Nack Thursday Dec 5th, 2013 4:48 PM

Photo by Jonathan Nack
Protest at MCDonalds in Oakland for $15 minimum wage
December 5, 2013
§Crowd at rally 1
by Jonathan Nack Thursday Dec 5th, 2013 4:48 PM

Photo by Jonathan Nack
Protest at MCDonalds in Oakland for $15 minimum wage
December 5, 2013
§Crowd at rally 2
by Jonathan Nack Thursday Dec 5th, 2013 4:48 PM

Photo by Jonathan Nack
Protest at MCDonalds in Oakland for $15 minimum wage
December 5, 2013
§These Ronald McDonalds don't look happy/
by Jonathan Nack Thursday Dec 5th, 2013 4:48 PM

Photo by Jonathan Nack
Protest at MCDonalds in Oakland for $15 minimum wage
December 5, 2013

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by reporter at large
Saturday Dec 7th, 2013 12:51 AM
thanks for covering this action!
by Jonathan Nack
Saturday Dec 14th, 2013 2:26 PM
an excellent article and very fine , clear photographs
by side story
Wednesday Dec 18th, 2013 9:18 PM
in the town I grew up in, there was a prominent McDonalds on a major intersection of the main tourist strip. there was one of those big colorful painted statues of Ronald McDonald on the corner that no one passing from either direction could miss.

it was there for years, but eventually someone painted Ronald's face black. McDonalds painted the face white again. someone returned and painted Ronald black again. and so it went every few months for the next several years.

it was too funny.

it really gets the goat of those who insist that Ronald McDonald, Santa Claus, and Jesus all MUST be white in every depiction ever.