Governor Newsom Signs First Law to Set Pay and Working Conditions for Fast-Food Workers in California

This past Labor Day Governor of California, Gavin Newsom, signed a new law that set wages and working standards for fast food workers in the state. The new law is called the “Fast Food Accountability and Standards Recovery Act” and according to the Sacremento Bee, the new law creates the first labor council in the nation specifically aimed to help those who work in the fast food industry.


The “Fast Food Council” will be comprised of ten members that have the duty of setting minimum standard for wages and working conditions. The council will be made up of two state officials, and eight representatives (either employees or employers) from the fast-food industry.


The Fast Food Council will be empowered to push for better working standards in a number of different ways, in whatever ways they may see fit. However, right off the bat the new bill sets new minimum wage requirements without any further action from the council needed.


First, the law requires all fast-food chains with at least 100 locations in the United States to have a minimum wage of $22 an hour beginning in 2023. This law will affect all major fast-food places like McDonald’s, Subway, Starbucks, Taco Bell, and many others in California. The minimum wage is supposed to increase annually based on cost of living.


Second, the law requires the Fast Food Council to conduct full reviews of the health, safety, and employment standards of fast food restaurants every three years.


The new law addresses and requires minimum wages, maximum hours of work, and other working conditions for fast food restaurants. For more details of what the new law does and requires see the full text of the new Act here.


Governor Gavin Newsom spoke highly about the new bill and its efforts in a press release stating, “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.” Newsome continued, “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.”


The new Act comes after a large union movement occurred this past summer where fast food employees were advocating for increased pay. Many major fast-food franchises were against the bill. However, labor union organization presidents and members spoke out about their overwhelming support of the bill.


Some supporters of the bill even hoped the measure would inspire similar efforts in other states.

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