Food service workers have long been vulnerable to various forms of mistreatment on the job. Whether it is not being paid their full wages under the law, being subjected to harassment, facing discrimination or other illegal acts, the issue has garnered more attention in recent years. Fast food employees have been especially vulnerable.
To address this problem, California has a new law to ensure fast food employees are protected. Understanding the law and when it might go into effect is key for workers whose rights have been violated.
Fast food workers could see higher wages and other benefits
The new bill signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom will create a “Fast Food Council.” This will assess how much workers are paid, how many hours they work and what the standard for working conditions should be. It is possible that fast food employees could earn up to $22 per hour. Restaurant chains that have a minimum of 100 locations across the United States would be subject to the new law in California.
The restaurant industry is against the new law. Its representatives claim the law is unfair because it only applies to larger chains and not those that do not have 100 locations. Franchise advocates also claim that it is an unfair law. Purchasing food at these establishments could be costlier. It may also lead to greater automation and fewer employees needed, costing jobs.
All workers have rights
While this law remains in flux and there are still hurdles for it to fully impact fast food workers, the current laws do provide various protections. Often, these workers are mistreated and their rights are violated without an understanding of how to fight back.
Many times, they are fearful of making the situation worse by speaking out, think they will be the ones to get in trouble or will lose their jobs entirely. When seeking to hold employers accountable for their behavior and breaking the law in any industry, it is useful to have advice from experienced professionals who specialize in wage and hour laws as well as other aspects of employment law.