Labor organizers seeking $15/hour wage for fast-food workers seek unusual ally in franchisees

MarketsAssociated Press

Labor organizers are opening a new front in their campaign for a $15-an-hour wage for fast-food workers by aiming to mobilize an unusual ally: franchisees.

The Service Employees International Union plans to announce Thursday that it is launching a website in hopes of building a national network of fast-food franchisees who want better protections for their businesses. The push has the potential to create more unrest within the ranks for companies like McDonald's, which are already dealing with demonstrations.

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McDonald's has more than 3,000 franchisees in the U.S. who run about 90 percent of its more than 14,300 locations.

The latest effort by the SEIU would mark an uneasy alliance, since franchisees are small-business owners who aren't generally aligned with unions.