Protesters voiced their opinions in Chicago and Iowa City on Thursday for better pay.
Workers in the food industry are trying increase the current minimum wage to $15.
“This is about the workers getting more money in their pocket and spend more money so they’re not on public assistance,” one protester said.
A report from the University Of Illinois and University Of California At Berkeley has found more than half of fast food workers are on one or more public programs totaling $7-billion in public assistance.
Opponents to raising the minimum wage say it will not help poverty as restaurants will just cut back on workers and hours.
The current minimum wage in Iowa is $7.25 while the median pay for the fast food workers nationwide is around $9 an hour, or about $18,500 a year. That puts workers’ earnings $4,500 lower than Census Bureau’s poverty income threshold level for a family of four.