SEIU groans over Trump's pick for labor secretary | KUOW News and Information

SEIU groans over Trump's pick for labor secretary

Dec 8, 2016

Donald Trump’s pick as secretary of labor is a fast-food CEO. And that’s got labor leaders concerned.

Andrew Puzder heads the parent company for Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. And he's against a proposal to raise the national minimum wage to $15 an hour.

David Rolf runs the SEIU 775 labor union in Seattle and was a leader in the movement to raise the local minimum wage.

He said this city can teach Puzder something.

"He should come to Seattle and learn what high minimum wages and strong unions can do for not only workers but for building strong local economies," Rolf said Thursday.

Labor leaders are also concerned that fewer workers will get overtime pay under a Secretary Puzder. A federal judge has already put on hold an Obama administration labor rule increasing the number of people eligible for overtime pay by 4 million.

“In practice what that means is that workers have less money in their pocket, and when they have less money in their pocket they aren't going to be able to spend it buying the things people need – like groceries, pharmaceuticals," Rolf said.

KUOW also reached out to the head of the Washington Restaurant Association for comment. But he was unavailable.