Home>Articles>Gov. Newsom Signs Legislation to Unionize CA’s 556,000 Fast Food Workers

Take out restaurant workers scramble to complete the order. (Photo: James Kirkikis, Shutterstock)

Gov. Newsom Signs Legislation to Unionize CA’s 556,000 Fast Food Workers

Get ready for more expensive, ‘slow food’ or kiosk clerks

By Katy Grimes, September 5, 2022 10:01 am

Governor Gavin Newsom and the state’s legislative Democrats just gave a whopper of a gift to the SEIU labor union – Gov. Gavin Newsom just signed Assembly Bill 257 by Assemblyman Chris Holden (D-Los Angeles), to unionize the state’s 556,000 fast-food workers fast food workers.

To gin up the SEIU’s latest union-member recruitment, fast food workers have been protesting wages, hours and safety at the State Capitol.

California is about to become the first state in the country to unionize fast food employees by expanding state government to create a new Fast Food Council within the Department of Industrial Relations to set minimum health, safety and employment standards across the California fast food industry – even though every business in California operates under health, safety and employment standards set by state and local laws.

“California is committed to ensuring that the men and women who have helped build our world-class economy are able to share in the state’s prosperity,” said Governor Newsom. “Today’s action gives hardworking fast-food workers a stronger voice and seat at the table to set fair wages and critical health and safety standards across the industry. I’m proud to sign this legislation on Labor Day when we pay tribute to the workers who keep our state running as we build a stronger, more inclusive economy for all Californians.”

As the Globe reported August 17th, the California Restaurant Association opposed AB 257 because AB 257 “requires fast-food giants to ensure all their restaurants have the necessary resources to operate safely”:

“AB 257 does nothing to help hard-working California families struggling with these costs, in fact it would only serve to hit their wallets even harder. also harms tens of thousands of counter service restaurants. It would impose increased employee costs and onerous new workplace rules at a time when many are still struggling to get back on their feet after the devastating impacts of the government mandated COVID closures. Many restaurants are struggling with labor shortages and increased costs for food and supply chain delays – all while trying desperately to stay afloat. We should be helping this vital sector of our state’s economy keep their doors open, not actively pursuing measures that would kick them closed.”

The International Franchise Association also opposed AB 257:

“Recent statistics show growing numbers of women and minorities owning franchise establishments, underscoring the importance of preserving the small business franchise model to promote minority and female entrepreneurship as well as continuing an economic recovery from the pandemic.

“It is the local franchisee who owns and operates the establishment, not the franchisor. Making labor decisions for franchisees is not a brand standard franchisors can establish or enforce under any law. [This bill] makes the improper assumption, and reaches the improper conclusion, that the franchisor and franchisee have some collective control over each other’s day-to-day business affairs.”

Expect lawsuits over AB 257 because the Legislature certainly does, but not what you think:

“This bill authorizes a cause of action for any employee of a fast food restaurant who is discharged, discriminated or retaliated against for exercising rights established by the FAST Recovery Act. The estimated workload cost of one hour of court time is $956. If 20 cases are filed statewide resulting in 20 hours of court time for each case, costs would be approximately $382,400.”

Get ready for more expensive, ‘slow food’ or high fast food unemployment after being replaced by kiosks clerks.

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35 thoughts on “Gov. Newsom Signs Legislation to Unionize CA’s 556,000 Fast Food Workers

  1. I think we can safely say that NO ONE wants this except for commie union hacks such as the former Asm Lorena “AB5 The Job Killer” Gonzalez who will make out from it BIG TIME. And if Gruesome wants to be tagged with okaying this type of job-killing, price-raising authoritarian B.S. then so be it. Good luck to him and all of his future endeavors. A-hole.

  2. so are all pimple faced, unskilled, teenagers, and 2nd language broken English speaking minimum wagers required to join the unions or does this mean they are allowed to form a union. I don’t understand.

  3. Another anti-business and job killing bill passed by Governor Climate Change and the Dumbocrats! They have the Midas touch, but what they touch does not turn to gold. Folks, we are in such good hands with these a-holes!

  4. Nothing commemorates Labor Day better than a job killing bill!
    In a year from now you will want to celebrate with a soft serve from Dairy Queen, oh wait they will no longer be there, cause they could not afford the labor increases.

    Happy Labor Day Y’all but not you small business franchise owners who out their life savings into their shop!

    1. No kidding, Cali Girl. I’m trying to imagine the happy efficient workers at In-N-Out Burger operating under this jackboot. Which will be like the unelected CARB of fast food franchises. Disastrous.
      Hope CW is correct, and it sure seems like he must be, that this cannot be AT ALL legal. Thus we look forward to a big challenge.

      1. I do too ShowanTell. I think CW is on to something.
        This is government overreach and actually strengthens union influence. It disrupts the free market system. It ends up hurting the very people they claim to want to help. Jobs will be lost.

        In and Out is already paying 18.00 an hour for workers here in the Bay Area. They and Chick Fil A have the happiest, employees and provide great customer service. The government needs to encourage and emulate their business model then maybe the DMV would run more efficiently and have happier employees.

  5. Well, Gavin has to help Biden by getting more union dues when they get their pay raises to help pay for all those college student loans…

  6. Why would any business want to operate in California when the corrupt Marxist Democrat cabal controls almost every aspect of your business and taxes you into oblivion?

  7. Perhaps the future of “fast” food will be to sit down and wait 45 minutes for your burger. This might get owners out from under this tyranny, Of course since this will be union “fast” food a regular restaurant will probably be faster than McD’s. 😉

  8. Here are some interesting numbers.

    There are 360K Fast Food workers in California. 97% of them do not belong to unions. Mostly by choice. Although California is one of the most unionized states 85% plus of private sector workers do not belong to a union. Most union workers are state, city and federal workers. Even then around 70% of government workers are not members of unions.

    SEIU, the “union” that payed for this bill has fewer that 40K members in California. Total. That means the speak for and represent 0.002% of all workers in California.

    Thats why unions buy legislation like AB 257. Because workers do not want to join unions because unions are little more than corrupt and incompetent extortion rackets that are an integral part of the Democratic party machine. It would have cost the SEIU and the other union lobbyists several $100K in lobby “expenses” to buy a bill like AB 257. Thats how desperate the union leaders are to hold onto their power and very lucrative jobs. Because so few want to join their unions.

    For the unions its money well spent. Its going to be worth many millions of dollars to them in the future and they wont have to go to the trouble of actually persuading workers to join their tiny, corrupt and ineffectual unions.

    1. PREACH IT !!!

      Thank you for calling out the truth here….

      For those that didn’t read that well-reasoned response – here’s the Cliff Notes version :

      “…unions are little more than corrupt and incompetent extortion rackets that are an integral part of the Democratic party machine.”

    1. And the prices of fast-food, which have already risen at least 25% in the last year, will no doubt rise another 25%+

  9. I am thrilled to have left this liberal cesspool of a state. It was too expensive when I lived there, this is going to make it obscene. I would love it if some fast food chain decided it would withdraw from California and pornhub and say so publicly, and loudly. I would love it if some fast food chain decided it would withdraw from California and pornhub and say so publicly, and loudly.

    No attitude, no jibber-jabber unintelligible gutter talking, no dirty bodies or messed up hair, no tattoos, no entitlement, etc., no spitting in your food ’cause you’re White and/or a police officer, etc., etc.
    I’ll take a ROBOT server any day!

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