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Protestors don't want Andy Puzder to become Labor Secretary

Detroit 15 protestors at Hardee's in Hazel Park, Michigan.
Bryce Huffman
Michigan Radio
Detroit 15 protestors at Hardee's in Hazel Park, Michigan

A group of fast food workers in southeast Michigan don't want Andy Puzder to become Labor Secretary.

The crowd of about 50 protestors gathered outside of a Hardee's in Hazel Park today chanting and shouting for raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour.

The minimum wage is currently $8.90 an hour in Michigan.

Puzder is the CEO of CKE Restaurants, which owns Hardee's and Carl's Jr. He was nominated by president-elect Donald Trump to become the country's next Labor Secretary.

Puzder has a history of opposing efforts to raise the minimum wage. His company has also come under fire for several sexual harassment claims from employees.

A.J. Thomas works with the group Detroit 15, a non-profit that organizes protests encouraging the raising of the minimum wage.

Thomas said fast food employees aren't just teenagers nowadays, some have a family to support.

“You've got single parents, you've got people who this is the only job they were able to get because of their background, but fast food was willing to give them a chance,” Thomas said, “and those people can’t live off of the current minimum wage, they just can’t.”

Sharrhonda Bush was one of the protestors who works in fast food. She believes the employees of these fast food restaurants deserve a bigger piece of the pie.

“It's sad when these corporations are making billions. It's just, asking for a union and fifteen isn't much,” Bush said.

Bush, who is a single mother with a three-year-old son, said she is protesting for a better future.

“We’re out here fighting for a cause so that we can have a better way of living for our children,” she said. “It’s hard, especially when you’re a single parent.”

Christine Allen also works in fast food. She said the proposed $15 minimum wage is “alright.”

“I’m not sure what it should be, but I know I’m out here today because now minimum wage is too low to support my family,” Allen said.

Puzder's confirmation hearing was supposed to be today, but was pushed back to further vet his qualifications as a candidate. 

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