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Rockford Fast Food Workers Demand Higher Wages

Rockford- The voices of fast food workers being heard in the streets of Rockford.
The voices of fast food workers being heard in the streets of Rockford. Nearly twenty workers braved the rainy and chilly conditions to kick off their first protest of the day,  in front of the McDonald's on Riverside Boulevard, demanding fifteen dollars an hour.

"I started off at $8.25. I'm only making $8.40. I been there for a year now. I should at least be getting $9-9.50," said Denzel Baldwin a McDonald's employee.  

Workers like Denzel Baldwin say that wage isn't enough for his family or his future.

"I am planning on going to college but I have a family I have two kids. Me and my fiancé talking about getting married and with the wages I'm getting now, it's just not enough to take care of everything, said Baldwin. 

Baldwin was joined by younger employees who say they're not getting paid enough for the hard work they do. 

"I'm here today to seek out justice as well as for many other families who have kids and cannot afford to pay their bills and want to go to college like me," said Giovanni LaBoy also a McDonald's employee.  

Twenty showed up for protests at the Riverside location and another later on Auburn street. These protesters say more would join them but --

"A lot of people fear they're going to lose their job or they don't want to embarrass themselves they might say the wrong thing. But that's not what it's about. It's about us getting more money so that we can better our families and better our future," said Baldwin. 

Baldwin hopes the protests here and around the country build momentum for raising wages.

"It might be small but eventually you know it's like a snowball once it start and it start going down the hill it will get bigger and bigger."

"Even if it's ten dollars I'm happy. But if you have ten to fifteen dollars you know that's perfect. That's better then $8.25 any day," said LaBoy.
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