| LOS ANGELES/CHICAGO
LOS ANGELES/CHICAGO Nov 29 Workers from
fast-food chains and nearly 20 airports will join nationwide
protests for higher pay, union rights and immigration reform on
Tuesday in their first major action since businessman Donald
Trump won the U.S. presidential election.
McDonald's Corp restaurants in 340 cities will be
prime rally targets, while baggage handlers and cabin cleaners
at Chicago's O'Hare and Boston's Logan international airports
will demonstrate in support of workers demanding starting pay of
$15 per hour, organizers at the 'Fight for $15' campaign said.
Home health and child care providers, and some drivers for
ride service Uber Technologies Inc are set to join the
action, which is backed by the Service Employees International
Last year Trump said U.S. worker wages were "too high" and
made the U.S. uncompetitive, while this year, he has said the
minimum wage should rise, with states taking the lead.
Hopes of a hike in the $7.25 per hour federal minimum wage
were dashed in November by the election of a
Republican-controlled Congress, but advocates say they will
continue to press for increases on the state and local level.
"We've already run a path to $15 (per hour) in states like
California and New York and we're not stopping now," said LiAnne
Flakes, 40, a child care worker from Tampa, Florida, who said
she plans to protest.
Voters in Arizona, Colorado, Maine and Washington raised
their state minimum wages in November, and labor groups are
considering campaigns in states including New Jersey,
Pennsylvania and New Mexico.
Hector Figueroa, president of 32BJ SEIU in New York, said
Trump won the election by promising jobs for voters who were not
able to see a way toward success for themselves or their
"There is no question to us that this is a moment that
working people need to take action, mobilize, organize, and that
(Trump) needs to be held accountable for his promises," said
Protesters also are likely to criticize Trump's promise to
deport up to 3 million undocumented workers with criminal
records and his treatment of women and Muslims.
"We reject sexism and racism and we will not allow our
friends and family members to be deported," said Terrence Wise,
37, who works at a McDonald's restaurant in Kansas City,
McDonald's said in a statement that it invests in its
workers by helping them to earn degrees and on-the-job skills.
Franchisees, who own most U.S. fast-food restaurants, set wages
for their employees.
(Reporting by Lisa Baertlein in Los Angeles and Timothy
Mclaughlin in Chicago; Editing by Bill Rigby)