With all of the organic and local items on menus, it has never been a better time to eat in our country. At the same time, this may be the worst time in a long time to be a restaurant worker. The wages of restaurant workers in Philadelphia have declined by 11% since 2003 and nationally, the tipped minimum wage hasn’t increased since 1991. Yesterday, five former workers from a popular Philadelphia sushi restaurant announced that they had reached a $40,000 settlement with their employer, showing a growing food worker movement a powerful example of how they can get organized and win.
“Today Tallahassee lawmakers took away my ability and the nearly 90 percent of Miami-Dade restaurant workers who don’t have sick days, to pass a Miami-Dade Earned Sick Time law that we so desperately need so we can take a day off to take care of ourselves or a family member when we are sick.” – Miami restaurant worker and ROC-Miami member Erica Sommers
Thirty five Miami-Dade municipalities with over 320 local elected officials just lost their power to locally implement any worker benefit laws including earned sick time to improve the lives of Miami-Dade workers and their families.
In the wake of the passing of HB 655, a bill that strips away all powers from local governments to pass legislation that benefits their constituencies, Tallahassee legislators have made it clear who their priorities are by siding with big businesses such as Darden, which owns Red Lobster, Olive Garden, the Capital Grille among others,” said ROC Miami Research and Policy coordinator Jean Souffrant. ROC-Miami along with other Miami Dade coalition partners will be working with local elected officials to call on governor Rick Scott to veto this bill. Over the next few days we will run a massive veto campaign in Miami-Dade County directed at Governor Rick Scott, who was recently quoted in the Orlando Sentinel article saying, “He believes in local control, and thinks the federal government should not interfere in state affairs.”
Please stand up for restaurant workers and call Governor Scott
850-488-7146 and urge him NOT to side with Darden & Disney at the expense of paid sick days and living wage for Florida’s workers!