The Daily Rail: Franchised Restaurant Chains May Escape Liability for a Location’s Wage Violations

Friday April 4, 2019

INFOGRAPHIC: Top 10 Antidotes to Restaurant Failure

You’ve heard the statistics, 90% of all restaurants fail within the first year. Fortunately, for everyone involved that appears to be inaccurate. The actual rate is more like 23%, which means that 77% of all restaurants remain open after the first year.


Burrito Making Violence

Police responded to an interesting assault and battery call on Monday at a Chipotle in Greenville, South Carolina, after an employee allegedly slapped his coworker. The victim told responding officers that she and the coworker were “play” fighting while closing the restaurant and got a bit carried away. Just an average Monday here in the restaurant industry.  


The environmentally-friendly athletic clothing company Patagonia has halted production of branded apparel for companies that do not make sustainability a priority. The company made the statement this week, according to Business Insider, which came as a shock to the “finance bros” —aka the preppy community where Patagonia clothing is very popular.  

Bark Bark

As we ramp up for the weekend, we thought you could use some lighter content. Photographer Christian Vieler specializes in capturing dogs in a moment of pure joy: the moment they catch a treat. Take a look at this gallery of his recent work. Trust us, this one’s important.


Why it matters to you: How are you keeping your employees and guests safe from unwanted affection?

As restaurant operators, it is our job to keep our guests and employees safe at all times. This task proves to be somewhat challenging in a time of #MeToo, and other harassment fueled situations. In an opinion piece in Eater, a bartender describes her strategies for patrolling for sexually predatory behavior and identifying when guests look uncomfortable. Her go-to tactic is to inform her guests if they are feeling uncomfortable with another guests’ affection and or close conversation, to order a screwdriver drink – and she’ll interfere with nothing else mentioned.

We’ve discussed similar stories before, as well as tackling the major sexual harassment problem in the restaurant industry. The solution doesn’t need to be over complicated. As we see from this bartender’s experience, as long as we are watching out for each other – there’s a better chance to spot unwanted behavior and interfere accordingly. The most important rule here is "if you see something say something." As managers and owners, we need to live and preach this policy to ensure our establishments remain the community-friendly safe places that we run them to be. 


Why it matters to you: Franchised restaurant chains may no longer be liable for franchises’ wage violations.

Workers’ rights have been at the center of the restaurant industry for some time now and have battled countless controversies. Recently, the U.S. Labor Department is reportedly set to create laws that would prevent workers at franchised restaurant chains from suing their corporate “overlords” for labor and overtime violations. Under the new proposal, employees wronged by franchises will be less likely to receive the money they deserve had the franchise run out of money.

In many cases, franchise restaurant owners often have relatively slim profit margins (and are already unhappy about rising minimum wages). If a McDonald’s franchise, for example, is failing to pay its employees, McDonald’s is not held responsible for the franchisee’s financial trouble. Therefore, workers cannot sue the McDonald’s brand if they didn’t get paid. This policy sheds some light on where the restaurant industry stands in relations to labor laws and how managers and franchise owners are investing in its employees on a global scale. As these laws have yet to come to fruition, there is still quite a bit to be said about how worker’s rights are viewed in a corporate franchise fueled landscape.