Bittersweet: As McDonald’s stops fighting raising the minimum wage, the SEIU is happy, but still has not unionized the fast-food industry.
In a win for Democrats and their political allies who are seeking to raise the federal minimum wage, McDonalds told the National Restaurant Association on Tuesday that it will “no longer participate in lobby efforts against minimum-wage hikes at the federal, state or local level,” according to a Politco report.
“We believe increases should be phased in and that all industries should be treated the same way,” Genna Gent, McDonald’s vice president of government relations, wrote in the letter. “The conversation about wages is an important one; it’s one we wish to advance, not impede.”
The timing of McDonald’s announcement comes just as Democrats face an uprising within their own ranks from red-state Democrats on the party’s $15 minimum wage bill.
SEIU Happy, But Not Finished.
“By sticking together and taking action on the job, courageous workers in the Fight for $15 and a Union have forced McDonald’s — the second-biggest employer in the world — to drop its relentless opposition to higher pay,” SEIU President Mary Kay Henry said in a written statement to Politco.
“Now McDonald’s needs to use its profits and power to give thousands of cooks and cashiers across the country a real shot at the middle class by raising pay to $15 an hour and respecting its workers’ right to a union,” the SEIU’s president said.
While the mere fact that McDonald’s has thrown in the towel on fighting minimum wage hikes is a victory (of sorts) for the SEIU, the entire Fight for $15 effort was a scheme hatched a decade ago in order to unionize fast-food workers.
Nearly ten years later, after spending tens of millions on the effort without putting a single fast-food restaurant under SEIU contract, the SEIU’s victory may be pyrrhic at best.
- $80 MIllion & Counting: SEIU Will Spend ‘Whatever It Takes’ To Unionize Fast Food Workers
- The SEIU stands to rake in billions by unionizing fast-food workers
- SEIU’s New Burger Queen? Internal Documents Expose Plan to Unionize Fast-Food Industry