Restaurant Sign About Having ‘No Staff’ Sparks Debate On Minimum Wage And Working Conditions
A fast food restaurant forced to close because of lack of staff has prompted a debate on Twitter over minimum wage employment.
Posted to Twitter by Republican congressman David Rouzer, a note left outside a branch of fast food chain Hardee’s explains that the restaurant has had to close due to ‘no staff’, and going on to say that the chain is looking to hire so it can re-open.
Rouzer decided to use the note to make a political point about stimulus checks handed out to Americans during the pandemic, which Republicans have criticised as ‘handouts’ discouraging people from working.
Rouzer wrote: ‘This is what happens when you extend unemployment benefits for too long and add a $1400 stimulus payment to it. Right when employers need workers to fully open back up, few can be found.’
Of course, Rouzer’s comments have sparked a big conversation on Twitter, with plenty of people calling him out for stereotyping workers instead of acknowledging the poor working conditions and low pay typically associated with working in fast food.
One person replied ‘No. This is what happens when employers pay workers starvation wages with no benefits. You don’t want to pay workers a living wage with decent benefits? Stay closed or do the work yourself.’
Another said that their own small business – which pays all workers a living wage – was receiving hundreds of applications, suggesting ‘could it be that people don’t want to make minimum wage with no benefits and the $20 billion private equity group that owns Hardees refuses to pay people anything close to a living wage?’
Several people also pointed out that the $1,400 stimulus checks given out by the government would barely cover one month’s rent for most people, with someone asking Rouzer, ‘Sir, how long do you think $1,400 lasts?’
Other users pointed out the hypocrisy of the congressman’s argument, with one user tweeting: ‘These are the same people y’all have been calling uneducated, unskilled, and unworthy of a living wage for years, now you’re mad ‘cause you want a burger and they dipped? Lol. Good for them.’
Meanwhile, @g02church had a short but simple explanation for the problem, writing ‘pay more. problem solved.’
Republicans in Congress have continued to block plans by the Biden administration to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 an hour, despite research showing that a majority of Americans would support plans to enforce an increase.
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