The Global Uprising Against Poverty Wages

Historian Annelise Orleck traveled to Mexico, Cambodia, and Bangladesh, plus all across America, to interview low-wage workers fighting for better conditions and pay.
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"We Are All Fast-Food Workers Now": The Global Uprising Against Poverty Wages.

"We Are All Fast-Food Workers Now": The Global Uprising Against Poverty Wages.

"We Are All Fast-Food Workers Now": The Global Uprising Against Poverty Wages
Annelise Orleck
Beacon Press

To research We Are All Fast-Food Workers Now, historian Annelise Orleck traveled to Mexico, Cambodia, and Bangladesh, plus all across America, to interview low-wage workers fighting for better conditions and pay. Whether she's talking to McDonald's employees, garment workers, or farmers, her conversations return to similar themes: insufficient pay, wage theft, and workplace abuse. Each of the struggles Orleck documents has received more comprehensive treatment elsewhere, but it is fascinating to see them stitched together, especially when the workers are doing the stitching, organizing and supporting each other across borders. In one memorable moment, striking California Walmart workers walk out and are greeted by Walmart employees from Italy, Spain, Uruguay, and South Africa, all holding up their Walmart IDs and singing union songs together.

A version of this story originally appeared in the February 2018 issue of Pacific Standard. Subscribe now and get eight issues/year or purchase a single copy of the magazine.

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