Last week, Professor Cesar Rosado Marzán appeared on University of Pennsylvania’s Knowledge@Wharton to discuss the ongoing NLRB labor law disputes with McDonald’s. From the interview:
McDonald’s appears to be in a tight spot, with problems looming whichever direction it goes. “If McDonald’s is found to be liable for the labor law violations of its franchisees, then as a joint employer it could end up at the bargaining table,” said Cesar . . . If, on the other hand, it doesn’t support the franchise operators, he agreed that it might end up earning the latter’s wrath.
Prof. Rosado Marzán continued,
“If McDonald’s is found to be essentially liable for the labor law violations of a franchisee, it means that it’s a joint employer according to the NRA. And if such, then it may end up on the bargaining table if, at some point, McDonald’s workers decide to bargain collectively […] with the corporation.”
Both Peter Cappelli (a professor at Wharton) and Professor Rosado Marzán were asked for their opinions on how the disputes might resolve. Prof. Rosado Marzán had this to say:
“It is a possibility that the work of franchisees’ employees gets upgraded and there is less turnover among them,” said Rosado. “Maybe some of these companies like McDonald’s [and] Walmart [will] look into their practices and maybe improve some things to quell the swelling of activism that we have seen against them.”
Listen to the interview and read Wharton’s summary here.
Also on Friday, BBC Newshour’s Julian Marshall asked Professor Rosado Marzán for input on the McDonald’s labor dispute. From the interview:
“The case is now about whether or not McDonald’s is liable for the labor law violations that are being alleged by the employees of the franchisee, who are saying, ‘My employer either fired me or in some way retaliated against me after I joined protests, but not against McDonald’s.’ McDonald’s the corporation is saying, ‘We’re not responsible; if anyone, it’s gonna be the franchisee.’ So this case is whether or not the corporation, McDonald’s, the franchisor, is a joint employer of the employees, directly employed by the franchisee, and therefore, liable under labor law.”
Audio for the interview is currently unavailable.
Follow Cesar Rosado Marzán on twitter: @cfrosado.