Police: 110 people arrested in KC protests calling for a $15 minimum wage
11:21 AM, Nov 29, 2016
4:07 PM, Nov 30, 2016
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - UPDATE 11/30: According to the municipal court of Kansas City, Missouri 108 people have been charged with failing to comply with police by failing to vacate a public street to allow for the free flow of traffic. Three of the 108 have an additional charge of placing an obstruction on the street. One person has an additional charge of hindering the arrest of another by locking arms with another arrested person, preventing said person from being arrested. One person is also charged with placing an obstruction on the street and obstruction or resisting arrest by locking arms with another person.
Kansas City police confirmed at least 110 people were arrested at protests calling for a $15 minimum wage.
Protesters were blocking Troost and Meyer in Kansas City before being taken away by police.
They took the protest to the sidewalk to avoid getting arrested for trespassing.
They want $15 an hour, plus union benefits.
The minimum wage in Missouri is $7.65, set to go up a nickel in January.
Kansas minimum wage is $7.25, with no increase planned.
Workers say they're barely getting by, even though some are making $8 and $9 an hour.
"Anybody that works in America deserves $15 an hour. We work for billion dollar companies that make $56 billion in profits a year, and they don't have money to pay their workers a living wage?" Latoya said.
Bridget Hughes is a married mother of four who works in fast food as a manager. She recently got a raise, but times are still tough.
"When we step through the door at home we're dealing with disconnection notices and late rent payments. I can't even afford simple, basic necessities like car insurance, sometimes even shoes for my children. A lot of us struggle to even get basic needs much less pay our bills," Hughes said.
Protester Ronny Reed said he won't settle for $10 or $11 an hour.
"It's got to be $15," Reed said.
"We're not going to back down until we win," Hughes said. "We know this is our right, we know that this is something we deserve. Any new government officials coming in, we want them to know we only support those ideas that are put out to help the working people."
At 11 a.m. UMKC students join fast food workers in a walk out near the student union.
Another rally takes place at 63rd and Paseo at 5 p.m. Protesters will march carrying banners and signs.