The SEIU-backed Fight for $15 takes to the streets again today to demand $15 and a union. In a full-page ad in USA Today, we highlight one of the most predictable consequences for less-skilled employees – job loss from automation.
McDonald’s has already installed over 7,000 of these units in higher-cost European markets. They’ve also been testing these units here in the US, and recently began testing McCafe coffee kiosks in Chicago. Many other brands are taking the same approach to managing labor costs. At the San Francisco-based restaurant Eatsa, you can order and pay for your meal devoid of any human interaction.
It’s no surprise that raising the minimum wage will only accelerate the turn to automation. When customers balk at higher prices, more-costly employees can be replaced by self-service alternatives who don’t walk off the job.