My protest paid off: Fast-food workers speak out

Fast food and retail store workers have joined in a wave of protests nationwide since November, asking for higher wages and more hours. How did it affect them? These four workers share their stories.

From part-time to full-time
fast food retail protest krystal collins
Name: Krystal Maxi-Collins
Employer: Macy's, Chicago

Collins, 29, worked at the Macy's (M, Fortune 500) department store off and on for two years, and was frustrated that she wasn't made a full-time employee. Her pay wasn't enough to support her family of four, so she worked a second job. When she asked her manager for a promotion earlier this year, she was passed over.

So Collins joined other retail and fast food workers on April 24 in a rally outside of Chicago's Union Station asking their employers to give them better hours, wages and benefits.

Soon after the rally, Collins' manager offered her a full-time position in the Macy's shoe department. Collins' pay went from $8.25 to $8.50 an hour, she was eligible for full benefits and her hours were bumped up to at least 32 per week.

"It makes you feel empowered," said Collins, who doesn't need to work a second job anymore and can spend more time with her family. "I didn't understand the power that people have when they speak up."

  @emilyjanefox - Last updated May 28 2013 06:07 AM ET
Join the Conversation
Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer LIBOR Warning: Neither BBA Enterprises Limited, nor the BBA LIBOR Contributor Banks, nor Reuters, can be held liable for any irregularity or inaccuracy of BBA LIBOR. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.