As a disability and personal injury lawyer, it pains me to see my clients in agony. It is just as disheartening to see children and veterans suffer.
Despite the current upswing in revenue, large American corporations have decided to keep employee wages uncomfortably low while corporate profits increase. Of the 12 companies that are paying their American employees the least, 7 are in the restaurant industry. These include, McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Starbucks, Darden Restaurants (Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Red Lobster), Dine Equity (Applebee’s, IHOP), and Yum! Brands (Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, KFC). These companies are within the confides of the law with the nation’s minimum wage regulations, but these employees are getting less bang for their buck than they should. The current minimum wage is worth 30% less in terms of purchasing power than it was in 1968. The other offenders of this immoral salary situation are national retail giants like Walmart, Target, and Sears. Being compared to Walmart is rarely a good thing. In this scenario Walmart is an especially bad company, since it is pretty well known that the Walmart CEO, Mike Duke, makes more in one hour than one of his employees makes in an entire year.
Many businesses have struggled to stay afloat during these trying economic times. Amidst the recent campaign season, the buzz was surrounded around middle-class America and small businesses, but we are slowly learning that small businesses aren’t the only ones hurting. Zane Tankel, chairman and CEO of Apple-Metro and owner of 40 Applebee’s restaurants expressed his concern for the Applebee’s chain to the Fox Business Network. Due to the Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as Obamacare, businesses who employ more than 50 people must provide each employee with an approved insurance plan. The penalty for not providing insurance is a $2,000 fine for every worker over the 30 worker mark. Tankel’s smallest Applebee’s staff consists of at least 80 employees, so you can see why he’s upset.