Unrest spreads to SoDo Arby's a day after workers launch informational pickets during Northgate lunch rush
It won't be business as usual at the SoDo Arby's today, as fast food workers and community supporters converge there to take action in support of a criminal wage theft complaint filed by a worker at that store.
The SoDo Arby's, the Northgate Jimmy John's and numerous other fast food outlets across the city are alleged to have committed the crime of wage theft. In total, the crime of wage theft is estimated to cost Seattle fast food workers as much as $100,000/week.
Who: Poverty-wage fast food workers from Arby's and other chains, along with community supporters
What: Take action in support of a criminal wage theft complaint filed by a worker at the SoDo Arby's.
When: TODAY - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 at 12:00 noon
Where: Arby's, SoDo: 2425 4th Ave S (between Walker St & Lander St), Seattle, WA 98134
Poverty-wage fast food workers are continuing to take action under a call that "Wage Theft is a Crime — Make Them Pay", as support from workers and community members intensifies and spreads:
- Last Thursday 7/25, several fast food workers announced they had filed criminal wage theft complaints with the Seattle Police Department
- Yesterday, fast food workers in Northgate held an informational picket drawing attention to reports of wage theft at the Jimmy John's.
- Today, fast food workers in SoDo will converge at Arby's in support of a criminal wage theft complaint filed by a worker there.
"Make them pay" events will reach a crescendo Thursday, when actions will spread to multiple additional stores across the city, culminating in a demonstration and march to a nearby fast food location, scheduled to begin Thursday at 4:30 pm at Westlake Park.
Follow along as events develop all week at #MakeThemPay .
Wage theft amounts to a crime wave: a formal multi-city study by the National Employment Law Project found that about 68% of low-wage workers experience some form of wage theft, and that those who do experience wage theft lose approximately 15% of their income to the crime. Extrapolating from that data suggests that the 4,300 fast food workers in the City of Seattle lose as much as $100,000 a week to the crime of wage theft — more than $5 million a year that goes missing from the paychecks of poverty wage fast food workers in the City of Seattle alone.
Wage theft occurs when an employer fails to pay time-and-half for hours over 40 in a week; requires employees to work without pay before or after their shifts, or during breaks; takes illegal deductions from paychecks, for example for uniforms or register shortages; or otherwise fails to lawfully pay workers for all their hours worked.
Wage theft is a crime: Good Jobs Seattle has received hundreds of reports detailing frequent violations of wage theft law at multiple fast food chains. Several criminal complaints have already been filed with the Seattle Police Department, and we expect that more will be filed in the days ahead.
More info is available on the Good Jobs Seattle Wage Theft Fact Sheet.
Sparked by the May 30th fast food strike, Good Jobs Seattle is a growing movement which seeks to build a sustainable future for Seattle's economy from the bottom up — by turning poverty-wage jobs in fast food and other industries into good jobs that offer opportunities for a better future and pay enough for workers to afford basic necessities like food, clothing and rent. Good Jobs Seattle is supported by organizations including Washington Community Action Network, Working Washington, OneAmerica, and hundreds of workers and grassroots supporters.
Contact: Sage Wilson, firstname.lastname@example.org