Crowds gather to support a raise in the minimum wage - FOX 13 News

Crowds gather to support a raise in the minimum wage

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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

Dozens of protesters in Tampa are demanding higher wages for fast food workers.

A rally along East Busch Blvd. was one of about 100 across the United States.

The protestors say the minimum wage should be $15 dollars per hour, and that they should have the right to unionize without retaliation.

Protestors brought signs, loudspeakers, and a life-size Ronald McDonald with a sign saying "minimum wage - i'm loving it."

Groups of fast food workers like Nijah Pretzer are fed up.

"You think it is simple, but it is actually hard work," she said.

They say their minimum wage salaries are long-overdue for an upsize. Minimum wage in Florida is $7.79.

"I'd like to fight for higher wages. I need to fight for my family, I need to take a stand for this," Pretzer said.

So Pretzer went on strike from Dunkin Donuts. She joined dozens of other protesters in Tampa, demanding $15 per hour and the right to unionize without retaliation.

She has two young kids and a husband.

"I want to be able to get them in college so that way they can have more success than I did, but working at Dunkin, I can't provide them that," she said.

"It is unfair we have to do back breaking labor to get $7.79 an hour when you got CEOs getting billions a year," said Britney Wilkerson.

According to Bureau of Labor statistics, most minimum wage workers are 25 or younger. They also say the highest number of hourly workers getting paid minimum wage are in the service industry.

We asked Twitter users to weigh in, and most disagreed with the $15 per hour notion.

"I have a bachelor's degree and I don't even make that," Another chimed in "fast food jobs are not worth $15 an hour."

Still, these protesters stood firm, and chanted on.

"This is one of the biggest industries, so why should we get paid so little?" Pretzer said.

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