Fight for $15—the movement calling for livable wages and union rights for low-income workers—launched a worldwide day of action on Wednesday morning with walkouts and rallies across the globe, spanning more than 200 cities in the U.S. and 35 countries.
By early Wednesday morning, protests were already taking place in numerous locations, including New York, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Las Vegas, Los Angeles, New Orleans, St. Louis, and Boston, among others. Workers blocked intersections in front of McDonald’s restaurants and planned speeches, presentations, and marches throughout the day for what organizers say will be one of the biggest Fight for $15 days of action yet.
The federal minimum wage is $7.25, though it varies from state to state. Organizers chose April 15 not just because it is similar to their call—”For 15″—but because they wanted to use Tax Day to highlight how workers are paid so little that they are forced to rely on public assistance to survive.
“On Tax Day, fast-food workers from Pittsburgh to Pasadena will walk off the job, while adjunct professors, home care, childcare, airport, industrial laundry and Walmart workers will march and rally in what will be the most widespread mobilization ever by US workers seeking higher pay,” organizers said in a statement.
Workers, who demonstrated under the banners of a broad coalition of organizations, including OUR Walmart, Jobs With Justice, D.C. Working Families, and several local unions, among other groups, emphasized the importance of raising wages as the cost of living in the U.S. soars.