New Law Will Give CA Fast Food Workers $20/hr

New Law Gives CA Fast Food Workers $20/hr

( The federal minimum wage is currently $7.25 per hour, matching several other states in the union. Assuming a 40-hour work week, that amounts to a measly $1,160 per month — before taxes — which is not a livable wage anywhere in the United States. In California, the minimum wage rate was $15.50, but the state government decided that wasn’t enough to sustain the working class. So, they are raising the bar.

On September 28, California Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom’s office announced the state leader signed a law raising the minimum wage for fast-food employees to $20 per hour. Currently, those same workers reportedly make an average of $16.21. The bump will take effect on April 1, 2024. Democratic Assemblymember Chris R. Holden from the Pasadena district introduced AB-1228, which increases the wage and authorizes the newly established Fast Food Council to control future working conditions and pay. The measure will affect about 500,000 people.

Newsom said the measure puts the state “one step closer to fairer wages” for fast-food workers, and the improved training and safer conditions will give them a “stronger voice and seat at the table.” According to the announcement, Holden was pleased with the governor’s stamp of approval as well, stating the legislation is among the “most impactful” moves for fast-food workers in the country. The lawmaker said the bill wasn’t just about minimum wage; it was about helping families — and that’s what they’ve done.

Activists and workers both praised the move. SEIU California and SEIU USWW President David Huerta thanked Newsom for his leadership, saying the legislation was the result of 10 years of “courageous activism,” as reported in the announcement. California fast food worker Ingrid Vilorio hopes that the win for the Golden State workers will show workers in other states that they can fight too — and win. The full-time gross income after April 1 of next year will hit $3,200.

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