San Diego fast-food workers plan a noon rally outside a Euclid Avenue McDonald’s on Monday — part of the nationwide effort to seek a $15-an-hour minimum wage.The local “Fight for 15” action is being couched in historical terms.
The rallies occur on the 50th anniversary of the Memphis sanitation strike, which became a rallying cry of the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
“San Diego workers will vow to continue the sanitation workers’ fight for higher wages and union rights and show their support for cooks and cashiers across the Mid-South who will be striking Monday for $15 and union rights,” said a news release.“Local fast-food workers will also announce Monday they will participate in six weeks of direct action and nonviolent civil disobedience beginning Mother’s Day as part of the new Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival.”
The manager of the 1515 Euclid Ave. McDonald’s — several blocks north of the Martin Luther King Jr. Freeway (state Route 94) in the Ridgeview Webster area — was not immediately available for comment.
Nor was McDonald’s corporate headquarters in Oak Brook, Illinois.
Local workers chose the location, which has been the site of an earlier protest, a spokeswoman told Times of San Diego.
At least a dozen community groups will take part locally, including the Poor People’s Campaign, rallying alongside workers from greater San Diego.
Organizers said protests and strikes across the country will end with a 1,500-person march in Memphis from Clayborn Temple to City Hall – the same route sanitation workers walked 50 years ago.
Memphis sanitation workers who took part in the 1968 strike will attend plus prominent labor and civil rights leaders.
The Memphis sanitation strike began on Feb. 12, 1968, when hundreds of black men went on strike for recognition of their union, a local of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, and demanded a raise to $2 an hour – the equivalent of $15.73 today after inflation, organizers said.
“Strikers marched daily from Clayborn Temple to Memphis City Hall holding signs declaring, ‘I AM A MAN.’”
King was assassinated in Memphis on April 4, 1968, a day after speaking to strikers.
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