Fast-food restaurant employees protested in New York City on Thursday, demanding higher pay and the right to form a union - the latest attempt by lower-wage workers in the United States to increase their compensation.
The campaign, called “Fast Food Forward,” seeks to roughly double hourly pay to $15 an hour and is being billed as the largest attempt to unionize U.S. fast-food workers.
Leading the effort is New York Communities for Change, a group that has helped unionize low-wage carwash and grocery workers in New York.
Strikes were scheduled at McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Taco Bell, KFC, Pizza Hut and Domino’s restaurants around the city throughout the day.
Occupy Wall Street may well have been the first global protest movement to rally around a statistic cribbed from an economics paper. So to mark its one year anniversary today, I thought I’d break out some of the latest numbers tracking U.S. inequality, courtesy of this month’s Census Bureau recent report on income, poverty, and health insurance coverage.
From 2010 to 2011, the top 5 percent of U.S. households upped their share of the country’s income by 5.3 percent. The top 20 percent got a 1.6 percent bump. And while the country’s poorest saw their piece of the pie grow by a smidgen, the middle classes lost ground.
Read more. [Image: Jordan Weissmann]
For most Americans, today’s jobs report was merely bad. For young people, though, the news was just downright awful.
After declining for most of the summer, the unemployment rate for workers between the ages of 16 and 19 popped up again, rising from 23.8 percent to 24.6 percent. Among 20-to-24 year olds, it hopped to 13.9 percent from 13.5 percent in July.
These numbers don’t necessarily mean that thousands of young people are suddenly getting laid off again. Rather, they’re a sign of how hard it still is for teens and early twenty-somethings to find work.
Read more. [Image: Jordan Weissmann]
I repost this not to discourage you from looking for work, though things look bleak. Do not give up on finding that dream job.
I post this so that you understand that your inability to find a job does not reflect poorly on you. It does not mean you are inadequate or a poor worker (though you may be poor in a different sense). You do not need to berate yourself for being unemployed.
US unemployment rate falls to 8.1% in August
U.S. employers added 96,000 jobs in August. The unemployment rate fell to 8.1%, from 8.3%, but only because more people gave up looking for work, The Associated Press reports.
Photo: Job seekers fill out applications during the 11th annual Skid Row Career Fair in Los Angeles, California, on May 31, 2012. (David Mcnew / Reuters)
Picture of the Day: Madrid, Spain. A bleeding demonstration shouts as she is detained by the police during dramatic clashes set off by anti-austerity protests in Spain’s capital today in response to the government’s announcement of 65 million euro austerity package. Coal miners converged on the Ministry of Industry building to protest the end to mining subsidies.
Credit: Andres Kudacki/AP. Via.
The U.S. Department of Education intends to crack down on postsecondary career programs that can’t demonstrate that enough graduates have found “gainful employment,” a move some for-profit colleges say could cost thousands of students the opportunity for a better future.
Read more. [Image: AP]
The big loser is Turkey.
Despite the horror stories you may have heard about over half of Greek and Spanish youths being out of work, the reality is a bit more complicated. The above chart courtesy of the OECD (via Alan Beattie of the Financial Times) gives us a more accurate picture of youth joblessness. Instead of counting everyone under 25 who isn’t working as unemployed, it only counts everyone under 25 who isn’t working and isn’t in schol or a training program as unemployed. Things are still bad, but not nearly as bad as the headlines suggest.