July 12, 2018
[Cross-posted at workingwa.org/media]
The following remarks were made by Rachel Lauter, Executive Director of Working Washington and Fair Work Center, in regard to Attorney General Bob Ferguson’s announcement that to avoid a lawsuit, seven fast food corporations will remove “no-poach” provisions from their franchise agreements:
“Workers who fight to raise their pay or take on wage theft and other workplaces issues are often dismissed and told to ‘get a better job’.
These ‘no-poaching’ agreements show that employers sometimes make it harder for worker to get that better job. They make it harder for workers to improve their circumstances. They stand in the way of opportunity.
But today that’s coming to an end.”
The following comments were made by Working Washington member Merlee Sherman, who works as a courier for Jimmy Johns:
“I’m a driver and a manager in training at Jimmy John’s, and what these no poaching clauses actually look like is suppressed pay and limited mobility for people within the company.
There has not been mobility for me to receive better pay at another Jimmy John’s based on my experience. There have not been options for me to go to another store and receive a better wage. All of those have been limited within the company itself.
Today’s settlement is a giant step for those of us who want to use our skills. Food education in general is my niche, it’s my passion, it’s my career. I want to share my skills with those coming into the food industry and I can’t do that if I can’t put food on the table.”