Eddie Guzman needed to work at least 20 hours a week to be eligible for welfare programs, such as food stamps and affordable housing. But his requests for more hours at the Brooklyn Burger King were met with deaf ears. Guzman's managers kept his working hours between 12 and 15 a week.
Tired of waiting, Guzman joined a protest and signed a petition in March advocating for more hours and better pay. Two weeks later, he was fired. He said his manager told him that signing the petition disrespected him.
One of the restaurant's managers, Imran Ali, said that Guzman was fired because he didn't give the store enough notice before not showing up for a shift.
"I didn't want to let them take advantage of me and not do anything about it," Guzman said. "I couldn't believe that I got fired just for that."
But community organizers and New York city council member Brad Lander went to the Burger King(BKW) to ask for his job back.
"New York's fast food workers have courageously stood up for fair pay and treatment and I've been honored to stand with them," Lander said.
Within days, Guzman had his job back and was scheduled to work at least 20 hours per week.