PATRIOTIC MILLIONAIRES SLAMS MCDONALD’S OVER LOW PAY, JOINS MASSIVE MARCH ON FAST-FOOD GIANT’S SHAREHOLDER MEETING
Patriotic Millionaires to join Women’s March, Movement for Black Lives, Our Revolution, Move On, and 10,000 underpaid workers in protest
Chicago, IL – On May 23rd, the Patriotic Millionaires will join the Fight for $15’s March on McDonald’s to demand that the corporate giant grant its employees a $15 minimum wage and union rights. Patriotic Millionaire Tax Zlotnitsky, Chairman and CEO of iControl Data Solutions, will speak in front of 10,000 activists gathered outside the annual McDonald’s shareholder meeting, making the case – as a business owner – for the corporation’s responsibility to provide its employees a fair and livable wage.
The mass protest comes as McDonald’s grapples with a wholesale rejection of its brand, revealing its current business model as unsustainable. For far too long McDonald’s top executives have enriched themselves – most recently giving CEO Steve Easterbrook a raise to $15 million/year – while refusing to pay workers a living wage. In America wages are so low they force workers to rely on welfare, costing taxpayers an estimated $1.2 billion. With high paid lobbyists on their side, the fast-food behemoth has watched profits soar while workers struggle to make ends meet. All this while in places like Australia, New Zealand, and Western Europe, the corporation is forced to pay wages $17-$22 and yet is still profitable.
As a group of some of the nation’s most successful entrepreneurs and investors in the nation, the Patriotic Millionaires are demanding that McDonald’s pay up. In their own words:
“Paying $15 an hour and supporting its workers’ right to a union is not only a moral obligation for McDonald’s, it’s good economics,” says Patriotic Millionaires’ Chair Morris Pearl, former managing director of BlackRock, Inc. “In an economy that is 70 percent driven by consumer demand, putting more money into people’s pockets means putting more money into the economy. The less people have to worry about basics like food and housing, the faster every additional dollar they have returns to the economy. McDonald’s should get behind the Fight for $15 for the good of their workers, the company itself and the economy as a whole.”
“Between 1980 and 2013, the income of the top 1% rose by 138%, while the income for the entire bottom 90% rose only 15%, both in real terms. Across the last 30 years, the gap between median wages of college educated and high school educated has almost doubled. The US minimum wage in 2015 was 2.4% below its peak value in 1965. Imagine a day in your life without anyone who currently earns $15 per hour or less. How long can we wait to do something?” says Patriotic Millionaire Dale Walker, entrepreneur and philanthropist.
“Why are some McDonald’s workers trained how to apply for public assistance? The low, unlivable minimum wage that exists now does not work. Paying workers $15 an hour will lead to healthier and more productive people” says Patriotic Millionaire Lawrence Benenson, Benenson Capital Partners.
“I urge McDonald’s and corporate America to do its part to create an economy that works for all by paying its employees a living wage. As a businessman who has created content and sold goods to consumers for decades, I can say with certainty that a guaranteed living wage improves the economy for everyone,” says Patriotic Millionaire Richard Foos, CEO Shout Factory and co-founder Rhino Records.
And just today, Chair Morris Pearl wrote an open letter to CEO Steve Easterbrook making the business case for raising the minimum wage. You can find that by clicking HERE.
To schedule an interview or for further comment, please contact Kelsea-Marie Pym at [email protected]
About the Patriotic Millionaires
The Patriotic Millionaires is a group of 200 high-net-worth Americans who are committed to building a more prosperous, stable, and inclusive nation. The group focuses on promoting public policy solutions that encourage political equality; guarantee a sustaining wage for working Americans; and ensure that millionaires, billionaires, and corporations pay a greater percentage of taxes. You can find out more at http://patrioticmillionaires.org/about/
The Patriotic Millionaires have appeared on hundreds of media outlets here and abroad, including The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, the PBS NewsHour, The New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and many others. You can find more coverage at http://patrioticmillionaires.org/media