Stand Up KC Organizes Misguided Fast-Food Worker Strikes in Kansas City
A group called Stand Up KC is organizing strikes at fast food restaurants in Kansas City. The organization believes that fast-food workers should be paid more money. The problem is that Stand Up KC is putting a lot of effort into organizing workers, but—based on their website and statements to the public—little to no effort into improving the value of the workers themselves. In the long run, this will hurt workers more than help them.
A business hires an employee because that employee will add value to the business. If you force businesses to pay more for each individual employee without increasing the value of the employee’s services, you’re encouraging businesses to find a way to get by with fewer low-skilled employees. Stand up KC’s tactics—calling strikes, advocating a local minimum wage hike, and agitating for a statewide $15 minimum wage—all seek to increase pay without increasing the value of services rendered.
The picture above is a McDonalds in Rolla. At this location you can order your meal from a user-friendly touchscreen computer. These computers are never late, they don’t go on strike, and they’re getting cheaper every year.
If Stand Up KC successfully drives up the cost of low-skilled labor, we’ll probably see a lot more restaurants with computers like this.