Quickservice workers in 60 U.S. cities walked out Thursday in a quest to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour and win the right to unionize, with estimates of the number of workers involved varying widely. The strikes, which started earlier this year in individual cities, have caught on largely via social media, said Kendall Fells, director of New York-based Fast Food Forward. Restaurant chains and industry groups pointed out that only 5% of workers earn the current minimum wage of $7.25, and pointed to the industry's role as a creator of jobs that can turn into careers. "Our history is full of examples of individuals who worked their first job with McDonald's and went on to successful careers both within and outside of McDonald's," the chain said in a statement.
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