Forty McDonalds workers are set to strike in September and there are signs the industrial action will only grow.
Forty McDonalds workers in branches in London and Cambridge announced on Friday they’d be striking for better pay and conditions at the stores at the beginning of September.
The fast food workers are demanding wages of £10 an hour, union recognition and more secure contracts. They’re being assisted by the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union (BFAWU).
We caught up with one of the strikers, who explained why they’re striking and what it means for fast-food workers across the country. (They requested we didn’t publish their name.)
“Our strike will be just the beginning. It’s the tip of the iceberg. There are hundreds of thousands of fast-food workers in Britain and we believe they’re experiencing the same issues as we are”.
“Since our announcement on Friday, the news has spread. McDonalds know this fight is coming and they should be scared.”
“We’ve already got thousands of others preparing to join us – other stores are organising at this point already, but haven’t gone public yet.”
“We’ve got the support of Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell. When before have fast food workers had the support of someone in such a high position?”
“The hundreds of thousands of exploited fast food workers around the UK will see what support they’ve got and this will grow; they’re coming with us.”
“Here’s a story about zero hours contracts. There’s a worker at my branch who went on holiday. He booked the time off. It was all clear with the management. When he came back, they’d cut his hours down to 1 day a week.”
“This resulted in him being unable to pay for his accommodation and he became homeless. This is what zero hour contracts allow management to do.”
“My personal experience is that during a refurbishment, they’ve been able to displace the entire workforce, cut the hours by a half and force us to take our holiday pay. So that’s how it works on a mass scale in the shop.”
“These things happen all the time. You have examples of people being hired by McDonalds and having to wait months just to get their first shift.”
“Our demands are for £10 an hour, union recognition, more secure contracts and an end to the bullying culture of managers. We want a voice and currently don’t feel like we’re being heard. We want a reaction to our grievances. That’s why I’m going on strike.”
You can follow the McDonalds workers strike as it develops on Twitter here.Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.