Franchisees Across the Country Slam Labor Decision that Threatens to “Steal the American Dream from Owners of the Nation’s 780,000 Franchise Businesses”

Chairman of the Senate labor committee urges Congress to pass legislation to roll back harmful labor decision

Posted on October 28, 2015

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 28 – Franchisees across the country are urging Congress to roll back the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) recent “joint employer” decision, which the chairman of the Senate labor committee says “threatens to steal the American dream from owners of the nation’s 780,000 franchise businesses and millions of contractors.”

Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said, “The NLRB’s new joint employer standard would make big businesses bigger and the middle class smaller by discouraging companies from franchising. The Protecting Local Business Opportunity Act would restore policies in place long before the NLRB’s radical decision – the very same policies that served workers, employers, and consumers well for decades, and I urge Congress to pass it immediately.”

The Protecting Local Business Opportunity Act, which was introduced by Alexander and House Committee on Education and the Workforce Chairman John Kline (R-Minn.), would roll back the recent NLRB “joint employer” ruling and reaffirm that an employer must have “actual, direct and immediate” control over an employee to be considered a joint employer.

Franchisees across the country are voicing their frustration with the new ruling:

Steve Carey, CertaPro Painters – Alabama: “CertaPro has no role in the employment aspects of my business at all… My freedom and autonomy — the entire reason I wanted to own my own business — will vanish.”

Mara Fortin, Nothing Bundt Cakes – California: “For now we are questioning whether we want to grow or expand given this climate of uncertainty and increased risk.”

Edward Rothschild, AlphaGraphics – Colorado: "We should be making copies and printing and not worried about who our employees will be working for… This is a very radical change."

Jim Clarke, Batteries Plus Bulbs – Florida: “This is a direct threat to the livelihood of millions of small businesses across America. I put up my own money to purchase the license and open my Batteries Plus Bulbs store. I worked hard to make it a success. Customers may walk into my store because they recognize the logo — and that’s part of what I bought into — but they purchase from me because my expert staff is friendly and we stock what they need.”

Robert Branca, Dunkin Donuts – Massachusetts: "We're not a shell for our franchiser… My employees have an employer. They know who we are."

Liz Szabo, Smoothie King – Pennsylvania: “The franchise model isn’t for everyone, but it was perfect for me… We’re no different than any other small business.”

John Sims, Rainbow Station – Virginia: “I fear that my days of being an autonomous business owner are numbered.”


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