NY Daily News
Edgar Sandoval and Meredith Kolodner
The 3,100 retail workers at the massive Elmhurst mall get no health insurance and can barely survive on the $7.25 to $8 an hour they earn, said officials with the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store union.
About 100 community and union members handed out flyers yesterday to shoppers, hoping to win support for raising salaries to a living wage as part of their Queens Center Mall Campaign. Community leaders say the mall owner, the Macerich Company, has received about $100 million in tax breaks, and should require tenants to pay workers $10 an hour. Macerich officials could not be reached for comment. The retail workers did not join the rally.
"They are intimidated," said Julissa Bisono of community group Make the Road. "They need their jobs."
Shopper Stephen Jarrett was quick to side with the workers."What can you really do with a minimum wage in New York?” asked Jarrett, 35, a sales clerk from the Rockaways. "No one can expect anyone to live on $7 an hour."