Day 2 of McDonald's protests hits during shareholders meeting

OAK BROOK, Ill. (WLS) -- Protestors returned to the McDonald's corporate headquarters in Oak Brook as shareholders met on Thursday. They want better wages for workers and the right to form a union.

The group chanted outside the meeting, "Hold the burgers and the fries. Make our wages super-sized."

Protestors want McDonald's to increase wages to $15 an hour.

"It's time for us to come together in solidarity, like we are today, and demand big corporations like McDonald's to pay us a living wage," Terrace Walls, fast food worker, said.

Police shut down some roads while the workers and activists rallied for the second day in a row. No one was arrested during Thursday's protest.

McDonald's CEO Don Thompson, who earned about $9.5 million last year, told shareholders the fast food giant has a history of providing job opportunities that lead to "real careers."

Fast food workers currently make about $8.25 an hour, which is the state's minimum wage.

I've got 10 years in hospitality management, and I'm getting paid $8 an hour," a man who said he's a manager from Wisconsin said.

"$15 an hour is unrealistic, but we do know the minimum wage will increase over time," McDonald's spokesperson Heidi Barker said. She said the minimum wage debate is an industry issue.

McDonald's also faces growing criticism from parents over nutritional content and market to children. Kentucky resident Casey Hinds said she doesn't want her three children cooked on fast food and soda.

"McDonald's is using Ronald McDonald to go into schools and market to kids behind parents' backs," Hinds said.

"We've evolved the Happy Meal to include more fruits and veggies, whole grains and low-fat dairy than ever before," Barker said.

Protestors say they will continue to fight for change.

"Just raising awareness about the issue is really the main thing," John Jungernberg, protestor, said.

During Wednesday's protest, more than 100 demonstrators were arrested on the fast food chain's corporate campus.

Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.