Fast-Food Workers Strike - Mary Kay Henry

  • Aired:  08/07/13
  •  | Views: 65,798

SEIU President Mary Kay Henry explains the economic benefits of turning fast-food jobs into good, middle-class jobs. (4:36)

HIS RENT AND FED HIS KIDS.

( LAUGHTER )

AND YOU KNOW, FOLKS, I KNOW

WHERE ?EEL'S COMING FROM BECAUSE

WHEN I WAS YOUNG I HAD A

LOW-PAYING JOB LOSING TEETH FOR

A LIVING.

( LAUGHTER )

( APPLAUSE )

BUT WITH HARD WORK--

( APPLAUSE )

YEAH.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

WITH HARD WORK AND A LITTLE

DUMPSTER DIVING OUTSIDE A HOCKEY

RINK I TURNED IT INTO A

PROFITABLE BUSINESS, AND TODAY

YOU MAY KNOW THAT TOOTH LOSS

BUSINESS AS THE "COLBERT

REPORT."

( CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ).

MY SAVINGS ACCOUNT RIGHT IN

HERE.

I JUST WISH I KNEW WHO THAT

MAGICAL TOOTH FAIRY WAS SO I

COULD THANK FOR HER FOR MAKING

ME INDEPENDENT OF MY PARENTS.

PLEASE WELCOME THE HEAD OF THE

SERVICE EMPLOYEES INTERNATIONAL

UNION MARY KAY HENRY.

THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.

( CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ).

OKAY, ALL RIGHT, LET'S GET THIS

STRAIGHT.

FIRST OF ALL, WHY ARE THESE

PEOPLE STRIKING?

THE PEOPLE IN FAST FOOD

SHOULDN'T EXPECT TO BE GETTING

RICH.

THEY'RE JUST TEENAGERS WORKING

PART-TIME JOBS.

>> 28-YEAR-OLD IS THE AVERAGE

AGE OF THESE JOBS.

THESE JOBS ARE NOW THE JOBS THAT

ARE AVAILABLE TO PEOPLE THAT

LOST GOOD MIDDLE-CLASS JOBS

BEFORE THE RECESSION, AND

THEY'RE TRYING TO MAKE ENDS MEET

AND ARE MAKING A DEMAND TO MAKE

THESE BAD, LOW-WAGE JOBS, GOOD

MIDDLE-CLASS JOBS SO WE CAN GET

THE ECONOMY GOING AGAIN.

>> Stephen: BUT WHY SHOULD

THIS CORPORATION HAVE TO PAY

THESE PEOPLE MORE THAN MINIMUM

WAGE?

ISN'T IT UP TO THESE PEOPLE TO

PULL THEMSELVES UP BY THEIR OWN

FRY BASKETS.

( LAUGHTER )

>> THESE CORPORATIONS ARE MAKING

MILLIONS AND BILLIONS OF

DOLLARS.

>> Stephen: YOU HAVE A

PROBLEM WITH THAT.

YOU UNION PEOPLE-- LET'S CALL A

SPADE A SPADE HERE.

I'M USING A BAD WORD HERE AND I

KNOW IT MIGHT OFFEND YOU, YOU'RE

IN A UNION.

YOU UNION PEOPLE HATE CAPITALISM

AND HATE BUSINESS.

>> WE'RE PROUD TO STAND WITH THE

FAST FOOD WORKERS ASKING

CORPORATIONS MAKING RECORD

PROFITS TO PAY THEM A LIVING

WAGE.

$5.5 BILLION IN PROFITS FROM

McDONALD'S JUST THIS PAST

YEAR.

AND WORKERS CAN'T-- ARE WORK

HARD AND CAN'T EVEN MAKE ENDS

MEET.

THAT'S WRONG.

>> Stephen: OKAY, THEN GET A

DIFFERENT JOB.

>> THERE ARE NO OTHER JOBS TO

GET.

AND WE CANNOT HAVE A STRONG

ECONOMIC RECOVERY IN THE UNITED

STATES IF WORKERS DON'T HAVE

MONEY IN THEIR POCKETS SO THEY

CAN BUY GOODS AND SERVICES SO

THOSE COMPANIES CAN HIRE MORE

PEOPLE AND WE CAN HAVE AN

ECONOMY THAT WORKS FOR EVERYBODY

IN THIS COUNTRY, NOT JUST THE

CORPORATIONS.

( CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ).

>> Stephen: THESE PEOPLE ARE

CLEARLY ON MY SIDE BECAUSE YOU

SAID THE WORD "CORPORATIONS" AND

THEY STARTED CLAPPING.

( LAUGHTER )

YOU WANT THESE PEOPLE ORGANIZED

AND IN YOUR UNION.

>> NO.

>> Stephen: YOU DON'T WANT

THEM.

SAY IT RIGHT NOW, "DON'T JOIN MY

UNION."

>> THE MEMBERS OF OUR UNION WANT

THESE WORKERS TO SUCCEED.

THEY WANT TO DO EVERYTHING THEY

CAN TO MAKE SURE FAST FOOD

WORKERS GET $15 AN HOUR BECAUSE

IT WILL MEAN ALL THE WAGE CAN

RISE IN THIS COUNTRY AGAIN.

>> Stephen: WON'T THAT MEAN

THE SERVICE JOBS, THE GUY

FLIPPING THE BURGERS, AREN'T

THOSE JOBS GOING TO GO OVERSEAS?

( LAUGHTER )

I HAVE TO DRIVE MY CAR ALL THE

WAY ACROSS THE PACIFIC INTO GENG

GONG, TO GET A BURGER FROM A

CHINESE GUY.

>> A VERY LONG LUNCH BREAK.

>> Stephen: YOU'VE HEARD FAST

FOOD CALLED A GUILTY PLEASURE,

RIGHT, OKAY?

PART OF THE GUILTY I FEEL IS

THAT I KNOW THEY'RE BEING

TREATED SO POORLY.

( LAUGHTER )

YOU KNOW, AND IF THAT GETS TAKEN

AWAY FROM ME, THE FOOD WILL LOSE

SOME OF ITS FLAVOR.

( LAUGHTER )

YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN?

I WON'T FEEL AS NAUGHTY WHEN I

BUY IT IF I KNOW THEY'RE NOT

BEING OPPRESSED BY A

CORPORATION.

( LAUGHTER )

SAME REASON I LIKE VEAL.

I CAN TASTE THE SADNESS.

( APPLAUSE )

YOU KNOW?

>> YEAH, I KNOW.

>> Stephen: YOU'RE WILLING TO

GIVE THAT JIEWP YES, I'M WILLING

TO GIVE THAT UP BECAUSE PEOPLE

SHOULD BE ABLE TO WORK HARD, GET

BY AND GET AHEAD.

AND THAT'S THE PROMISE WE MADE

TO EVERY WORKENER THIS COUNTRY.

PEOPLE ARE WORKING HARD AND

BARELY GETTING BY, AND IT'S

WRONG.

AND THESE WORKERS ARE STANDING

UP FOR ALL OF US, AND THEY'RE

GOING TO MAKE THESE LOW-WAGE

JOBS GOOD JOBS, JUST LIKE AUTO

JOBS BECAME GOOD JOBS, SERVICE

JOBS CAN BECOME GOOD JOBS.

AND THANK GOD FOR THE FAST FOOD

WORKERS FOR STANDING UP AND

MAKING THAT HAPPEN.

>> Stephen: THANK YOU FOR

JOINING ME.

THE PRESIDENT OF THE SERVICE