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This Week: First Ever Nationwide Fight for $15 Convention

Missouri will be represented at the first ever national Fight for $15 convention. (Stand up KC).
Missouri will be represented at the first ever national Fight for $15 convention. (Stand up KC).
August 9, 2016

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The first-ever nationwide Fight for $15 convention is being held Friday and Saturday in Richmond, Virginia. A contingent from Missouri will take part in a march and rally.

Terrance Wise is a fast food worker from Kansas City, and a member of Fight for 15 and Stand Up KC. He said he can't afford to miss work, but someone has to take action.

"Life is supposed to get better but it's been in the decline over the years," he said. "I've been losing homes despite the fact that I'm working two full time jobs. Not being able to keep food on the table, struggling with bills, it just seems unimaginable."

Organizers say they expect about 10,000 people from all 50 states participating in the march and rally this week. Wise said they are just a small representation of the 64 million workers across the country who make less than $15 an hour.

Wise said families are being impacted and people need a life where the thought of buying dinner or paying the electricity bill doesn't cause panic.

"And not only is it affecting your kids and your family structure, but then it starts to weigh on you mentally and takes a toll on your health and stress," he added. "So it affects you on so different many levels and then you still have to exist. You still have to get up and go to work and be there and be a provider for your family."

Wise said the march and rally will draw links between the crisis of today's falling wage floor and the effects it's having on working people of color.

"When you can bring those people together and demand a better wage then we have a voice and we can win better for workers, but first we've got to have the conversation, we've got to get organized," he said.

Veronica Carter, Public News Service - MO