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Local Burger Joint Pays Employees $15 An Hour

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(credit: Aaron Gonzalez/WWJ)

(credit: Aaron Gonzalez/WWJ)

sandramcneill Sandra McNeill
After graduating from the University of Michigan, Sandra McNeill...
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DEARBORN HEIGHTS (WWJ) – As the battle continues between McDonald’s and its employees over their compensation, one local takeout joint is voluntarily hiking workers pay to $15 an hour.

“First of all, they’re not burger flippers — we don’t consider them that,” said Brian Parker, co-owner of Moo Cluck Moo in Dearborn Heights.

Parker says there’s more to the job than most people think and as they’re on the front lines conversing with customers, his workers are his most important investment.

He told WWJ’s Sandra McNeil he’s hiking his employees’ pay from the current $12 pay rate — because they’re worth it.

“I think these people work really, really hard for what they do … and, you know, they come from all walks of life,” he said.  “They really put their heart and soul into what goes on around here,”

Parker said some of his workers have studied the culinary arts, and some have not — but all of them deserve a living wage.

“They’re very skilled in the food prep, our sourcing, and checking the food when it comes in,” he said. “It’s not as automated as some people think it is.”

Parker said higher wages don’t have to mean high prices.  He’s able to sell his burgers for $3 each and still turn a healthy profit.

Is he trying to send a message to bigger players in the fast food game?

“Oh, I don’t know,” he said. “We may be a small voice, I guess, but we’re just trying to do the right thing.”

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