Saturday, September 30, 2023

Fast food workers in California have a minimum wage of $20 an hour

SACRAMENTO, California, USA. —

Most fast food workers in California will receive a minimum wage of $20 an hour starting next year — an increase of nearly $5 an hour — under an agreement released Monday by unions and industry, which avoid a costly referendum on the November 2024 ballot.

The mandatory wage increase for all fast food restaurants in California that are part of a chain with at least 60 establishments nationwide. It does not apply to restaurants that operate a bakery and sell bread as a stand-alone menu item, such as Panera Bread. The $20 hourly wage goes into effect April 1 and a council has the power to increase it every year until 2029.

Ingrid Vilorio, a fast-food employee at a Jack In The Box restaurant in the San Francisco Bay Area, said next year’s salary increase will give peace of mind to her family, who until now have been in a house of two other families. able to pay the rent.

“Many of us (in the fast food industry) have to work two jobs to pay the bills; This will give us a little leeway,” said Vilorio, who also works as a nanny.

The agreement ends a tense confrontation between labor unions and the fast food industry, which began last year when California Governor Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, signed into law an initiative to establish a Fast Food Council with the power to raise workers’ wages to $22 an hour. The current state minimum wage for all industries is $15.50 an hour.

Before the law went into effect, the fast food industry collected enough signatures for the measure to be put on a referendum in the November 2024 election. That means the law is on hold until voters decide. whether it is canceled or not.

Outraged, unions this year sponsored an initiative that would hold fast-food companies like McDonald’s accountable for any wrongdoing in the state by franchise operators, many of which are independent. Democratic lawmakers also restored funding to the Industrial Welfare Commission, a long-dormant state agency with the power to set wage standards and working conditions in various industries.

Both measures have raised alarm among business groups. The parties started negotiations a few months ago. In exchange for a $20 hourly minimum wage, unions withdrew their push to hold fast-food companies accountable for labor violations by franchise operators, and lawmakers eliminated funding for the Welfare Commission Industry.

The Fast Food Council established by the original initiative will continue to exist, but will only have the power to set wages, not working conditions. The agency makes recommendations on working conditions standards to various state agencies.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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