"A society built on low-wage jobs does not deliver purchasing power, it only increases the number of workers in poverty."
Gerawan Farming, one of the country's largest growers, is challenging the law that makes farm workers' union rights enforceable.
"Investors and companies have received benefits," Trumka said, "while workers have not, this has to change."
"People who make less than $15 an hour know plenty about money; they know what it's like not to have enough money."
The U.S. official unemployment rate stayed at 5.5 percent in March, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced.
A fiery labor orator, feminist and socialist, she served as president of the Women's Trade Union League.
In Panama they call longshore pay "hunger wages." Workers' families live below the government's own poverty line, and some families literally go hungry.
"Millions of families working for poverty wages will continue to struggle until McDonald's pays a living wage."
Fast food servers, homecare and airport workers, and students gave witness to the low pay facing them in today's increasingly service-centered economy.
"It's a PR stunt, and that stunt isn't going to pay my gas bill this month, or get my landlord off my back."