Labor Pains: Because Being in a Union can be Painful

TV Commercial Slams SEIU for $20 Minimum Wage Hike

Today, the Center for Union Facts released a new ad highlighting the devastating impacts of California’s new $20 minimum wage for fast food workers, which goes into effect Monday. It will run in the coming days as a television and digital ad buy in the Los Angeles and Sacramento markets.

The tongue-in-cheek video features fast food workers “thanking” the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) for the damaging and inconsistent law, leading to higher prices, business closures, and layoffs. In fact, California restaurants are already killing jobs and cutting hours ahead of the increase.

The SEIU was behind the bill that created the California Fast Food Council as well as the new $20 wage—a hike that continues to be championed by Gov. Gavin Newsom despite fierce opposition from impacted workers, employers, and economists. 

The California Fast Workers Union is based in Washington, D.C., not California; it’s not a legal labor union and can’t bargain with employers; and it represents far less than one percent of the state’s fast food workforce. For more on CUF’s take on the SEIU’s fake union, read our recent OC Register op-ed here.  

A CUF survey of California restaurant workers released in March found that the workforce isn’t aligned with the SEIU’s agenda. We asked restaurant workers what they thought of the $20 wage hike and its potential consequences. Below are some key findings:

  • 60 percent said it would lead to higher prices; 
  • 51 percent expected fewer shifts or hours scheduled;
  • 40 percent anticipated staffing cuts;
  • 39 percent predict fewer new highers.

The SEIU alleges that restaurant employees face an abusive environment, and do not feel they are heard at their place of work. The same survey asked these workers to share their experiences working in the restaurant industry. Here’s what they had to say: 

  • 92% enjoy working at their restaurant; 
  • 76% feel that their concerns are heard; 
  • 95% feel safe at work; 
  • 88% have the tools they need to solve problems at work.
Categories: SEIU