Our View: Striking for higher wages in fast food jobs

DKS Editors

As the cost of living continues to climb, fast food workers across the nation walked off their jobs Thursday in an effort to make it known that $7.25 an hour no longer pays the bills.

For many of us college students, trying to make ends meet is not a new phenomenon. We bus tables, stock shelves and man the drive thru in order to afford our ramen noodle dinners.

But Thursday’s strikers think enough is enough, according to the Chicago Tribune. They’re asking for base wages in the service sector to be more than doubled to $15 an hour.

Now it’s fair to say that most would prefer to make more money, but the question is, what constitutes a living wage anymore?

Fast food workers in every city in America are trying to put food on the table, make rent payments and support a family.

Kent State University students are facing these problems as well – all while trying to afford their textbooks and find extra cash to cover the increase in tuition.

We accept that determining a fair wage for all workers is near impossible, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t time for a discussion.

Recently, President Obama called for an increase in the federal minimum wage to $9 per hour in an effort to address levels of income inequality. While nothing has yet come of this campaign, if workers continue to make their needs known, it could be the beginning of change.

Though, Thursday’s strikers don’t want to wait. Their push for a $15 an hour base salary has generated strikes in more than 60 cities.

In our minds, whether or not $15 an hour is a practical base salary is up for debate because raising the federal minimum wage will result in raising product costs. So essentially, the dollar menu that is near and dear to all of our hearts may have to become the five-dollar menu – a change that our unpaid internships can’t fund.

We don’t expect any quick changes coming down the pike, but we’re hopeful the strikes have put a spotlight on the issue.

The above editorial is the consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board, whose names are listed above.