The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

California’s Fast Food Council:
A Sleight of Hand for Workers

Oct 10, 2022

On September 5th, the governor of California signed the Fast Recovery Act, creating an appointed council that could set wages and other workplace conditions for all workers in the fast-food industry. That means, the council’s decisions can affect all 360,000 fast-food workers in California.

They are telling workers the council will ensure them gains. However, whatever representatives workers do have will always be in the minority. The 10-member council will consist of only four labor representatives. Those four labor representatives are those very same labor officials telling workers that there is a substitute for their own struggle. With the rest being business representatives and government officials.

The council itself is extremely limited in scope. For instance, the council doesn’t set a minimum wage, rather it places a ceiling of up to $22 an hour and no higher. Additionally, the State Assembly will have up to six months to veto all the decisions of the council.

Capitalists are already beginning to challenge the law. Since last month, fast-food corporations have already raised millions for a referendum. And these companies have very deep pockets. Joining McDonald’s against this law are companies like Starbucks, KFC, Taco Bell, and many others.

In collusion with union officials, politicians are acting like they are doing something, but everyone knows none of this will hold water. By doing so, they are attempting to pacify the workers. However, a law with so many holes will do nothing other than help the ambitions of a few politicians.

Whether this law stays or goes, it will not matter when workers begin a class-wide fight. There is no substitute for the class struggle.