All across the United States, Fight for $15 rallies, such as the ones held globally April 14, have drawn tens of thousands of participants at each location. Some states and cities have increased their minimum wage to $15 an hour voluntarily and have been in the process of doing so far longer than just this past year.
The Fight for $15 actually has its roots back in 2012. Among those companies raising their minimum wages are Facebook, Aetna, and Nationwide Insurance according to a report released by the National Employment Law Project (NELP) in a report released just this month.
Last year, a few hundred fast food workers, mostly from New York City protested saying that they needed to have a living wage. Since then the movement has gained momentum and the cry to increase stagnant wage rates that have not been keeping up with the cost of living have increased. According to Paul Sonn, NELP general counsel and program director in New York City, in an interview with SHRM Online, the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, the Greater New York Chamber of Commerce and the Long Island African American Chamber of Commerce are all in support of the wage hike to workers to $15 per hour.
The Fight for $15 rallies “have become a national movement that has pushed economic equality to the front” of political debates, Sonn said.
The protests have reached what some consider critical mass and have now evolved into an international grass- roots movement which includes more than 300 cities worldwide. The rallies which were held on April 14th were held in 320 cities and in 40 countries. The Fight for $15 movement aims to raise the minimum wage for fast-food workers, home health aides, child care teachers, airport workers, adjunct professors and retail employees.
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