Recently, the U.S. Department of Labor released a proposal that would limit wage claims against chain corporations like McDonald’s for employment-law violations filed against franchise owners or contractors. This announcement comes just days after McDonald’s, the world’s largest restaurant chain, released a statement that it will stop lobbying in Congress against industry wage hikes.
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On February 1, 2019, the new minimum wage for app-based drivers took effect, despite legal action taken by ride-sharing companies Lyft and Juno to prevent the wage increase. Crain’s New York Business reported the Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) voted to establish the first minimum wage in the nation for ride-sharing drivers.
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New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law a bill which structures the gradual increase of the minimum wage in New York to $15.00. This structure provides a different schedule in three different regions of New York including, 1. New York City; 2. Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties; and 3. outside Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties. Not only does each region have a different schedule, but each type of business within New York City has different schedules as well.
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The U.S. Supreme Court recently struck down a challenge by business groups in the Seattle area to the city’s law that will raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. This also affirms a lower court ruling, which also supported the law.
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Attorney Steven Mitchell Sack, “The Employee’s Lawyer,” says fast food workers in New York State do not make enough money and should be able to earn at least $15 an hour. This, he says, will mean not only increased employee morale but employee retention.
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McDonald’s has recently taken measures to improve wages and benefits for its employees. However, these newly implemented policies will only affect those employed by the company stores, not franchisees. As part of the new benefits, employees will see an increase in salary to at least $1 above the local minimum wage, eligibility for time off, and a new program applying to all employees who wish to earn a high school diploma or fund their college education. 90,000 workers would be affected at 1,500 McDonald’s restaurants. This means that 90% of McDonald’s workers would not see these benefits as the majority of the restaurants are franchisee-owned.
Continue reading “McDonald’s Joins Companies Nationwide that are Raising Wages”
In a combined effort to ensure overtime protections for low- and mid-wage salaried workers, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, along with eight Senate officials, recently introduced the Restoring Overtime Pay for Working Americans Act.
Presently, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) guarantees a minimum wage and overtime pay for private-sector U.S. workers. However, many workers are considered “exempt” from the law, partly because of a salary threshold, $23,660 per year or $455 per week, which is specifically directed at managers and “professional” employees.
Continue reading “Federal Bill Proposal Seeks To Raise Overtime Threshold”