Protesters led by the Service Employees International Union picketed several quick service franchise restaurants throughout the country while advocating for an increase in the federal minimum wage. The protesters demanded that the hourly wage floor, currently set at $7.25, be raised to $15 an hour. “Arbitrarily increasing the cost of labor in the current economy and on top of the costs already being levied on franchise owners by Obamacare’s employer mandate and recent tax increases will result in higher prices for consumers, lower foot traffic and sales for franchise owners, and ultimately lost entry-level jobs,” said IFA President & CEO Steve Caldeira in a statement responding to the protests.
The IFA and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce also released research that highlights the unintended consequences of raising the minimum wage, including fewer jobs, reduced hours for workers and slower economic growth. Moreover, the research highlights that employers will make these and similar personnel decisions that will negatively impact workers commensurate with the size of the increase in the minimum wage, whether to a “living wage” of $15 an hour or more, and even to a lesser increase to $9 an hour. Read more
- The Hill-Op-ed by Steve Caldeira: Mandating higher minimum wage will hurt employees and economy
- Washington Post: Why franchises are such a huge obstacle to higher wages
- Charlotte Observer: Fast-food workers, activists protest for “supersized” wages
- San Francisco Chronicle: Fast-food workers rally for better pay
- Bloomberg Businessweek: Fast-Food Workers of the World, Unite!
- New York Times: <nyt_headline>$15 Wage in Fast Food Stirs Debate on Effects
- MSNBC: Minimum wage, major fight
- The New York Times: <nyt_headline>Life on $7.25 an Hour
- Inc: Will Striking Fast-Food Workers Hit Franchises Where It Hurts?
- Politico Influence: Trade Groups Push Back on Proposed Wage Hikes