Dec 18, 2020 | News Story

NYC Will Prohibit Major Fast Food Employers From Firing Workers Without Just Cause

NYC fast food workers will get increased protections under two bills that passed in the City Council yesterday. The two bills will increase protections for workers at large fast food companies, expanding upon worker protection laws passed in 2017.

One measure will prohibit fast food employers from firing workers without "just cause," meaning showing the employee failed to meet job duties or has harmed the employer's business interests. Another will require that any layoffs occur by seniority, protecting workers who have been with a given company longer. The new rules will go into effect about six months from now.

A downtown Manhattan Chipotle worker, Jeremy Espinal, said at a virtual rally on Thursday morning that he enjoys his job at the burrito fast casual restaurant, but the working environment is "toxic." He's been relocated to four different locations over his three year tenure, once due to an unexpected hours reduction.

"[T]hey kind of keep us always on our toes and always make us feel like we're disposable and that they can always fire us," Espinal said during the virtual rally. "If 'just cause' had happened earlier, I would have countless friends that would still have their jobs." Read more here.