McDonald’s (MCD) workers are planning to strike on May 19, seeking wages of at least $15 an hour.

News of the strike comes as several companies have upped their minimum wage, with the most recent being Mexican-foot chain Chipotle, which announced Monday that it would pay employees $15 an hour as it looks to bring on 20,000 workers to fill new positions. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour.

Ther McDonald's workers' strikes are planned for at least 15 cities on May 19, the day before the company holds its annual shareholders' meeting, according to a Facebook post by advocacy group Fight for $15.  The cities include large markets such as Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston and Detroit, as well as Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, and Flint, Michigan, among others.

Join fast food workers and activists across the country on May 19 to demand that McDonald’s, the nation’s largest...

Posted by Fight for $15 on Monday, May 3, 2021

 

The news of the strike comes amid a labor shortage in the restaurant industry. Several chains have tried a variety of tactics to get workers to fill open jobs at their stores to no avail. One McDonald’s restaurant in Tampa, Florida, offered $50 to anyone that showed up for a job interview.

In previous years, McDonald’s has lobbied against federal minimum wage increases, stopping the practice in 2019, according to the restaurant industry site Restaurant Dive. McDonald's has been criticized for belonging to the National Restaurant Association and the International Franchise Association, both of which lobby against federal minimum wage increases.

In late April, McDonald's CEO Chris Kempczinski said in an earnings call that "Our view is the minimum wage is most likely going to be increasing whether that's federally or at the state level as I referenced. And so long as it's done … in a staged way and in a way that is equitable for everybody, McDonald's will do just fine through that."

The upcoming strike is not the first by McDonald’s workers. In May 2020, they formed a walkout over pay and working conditions amid the pandemic. Hundreds of U.S. workers went on strike in what McDonald’s told USA Today was a strategically timed “publicity stunt” to align with its shareholders’ meeting.

Employees called for a $15-per-hour wage and safer working conditions during the pandemic, along with sick time for those that had the virus. The strike was organized by Fight for $15 and the Service Employees International Union.

Shares of McDonald's on Monday were trading at $237.12 as of 2:47 p.m. ET, up $2.28, or 0.97%.

McDonald's A classical singer was enjoying a McChicken sandwich at a McDonald’s outlet in Edinburgh, Scotland, on Monday when she discovered a dead spider in her food. In this photo illustration, a McChicken sandwich sits with typical Dollar Menu items sold at a McDonald's restaurant in Des Plaines, Illinois, October 24, 2013. Photo: Getty Images/ Scott Olson