Eight arrested at Wilkinsburg McDonald's in protest for wage hike
September 4, 2014 10:32 PM
Fast food workers protesting low wages sit in the middle of Penn Avenue in front of the Wilkinsburg McDonald's, refusing orders of Wilkinsburg police to clear the street.
Ashona Osborne, 22, of Penn Hills, who works at Wendy's, ties a yellow ribbon around her arm during a fast food workers' protest today in Wilkinsburg. Ms. Osborne said the ribbon is a symbol of civil disobedience and that she planned to get arrested during the protest to draw attention to the problem of low wages.
Fast food workers protesting low wages march down Penn Avenue in front of the Wilkinsburg McDonald's.
Fred Connor joins other minimum wage earners in a protest today in Wilkinsburg.
By Ann Belser / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Ronald Poole was wearing his McDonald’s uniform and being put into an Edgewood police car Thursday when he explained why he was blocking the street to advocate for a pay raise.
“My family is worth going to jail for. I’ve got to rob Peter to pay Paul,” said Mr. Poole, 42, of the North Side, who has worked for the McDonald’s restaurant on Allegheny Avenue on the North Side off and on for 20 years. He makes $7.25 an hour.
Eight people were arrested during the midday protest for sitting in the middle of the eastbound lane of Penn Avenue in Wilkinsburg in front of the McDonald’s restaurant there. Police blocked the lane, with their cars stopping traffic, and then one-by-one arrested each of the protesters. The protesters had linked arms together, but they gave up to the police without a struggle.
About 150 other protesters stayed on the sidewalk, chanting that they wanted $15 an hour now and “if we don’t get it, shut it down.”
The protest followed morning demonstrations on the North Side and in Bellevue. All of the protests were part of a national 150-city fast-food strike, with cooks and cashiers walking off their jobs to demand $15 an hour and union representation. The rallies are being organized by One Pittsburgh and Fight for $15, which are both funded by the Service Employees International Union.
On Thursday, organizers said protesters were arrested in Chicago, Detroit, Las Vegas, Little Rock, Ark., and New York City.
The fast-food wage fight started at a McDonald’s restaurant in New York City two years ago.
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