Jun 26, 2024

California keeps adding more fast food jobs

What you need to know: Since the minimum wage law went into effect, California added more than 10,000 new fast food jobs; every month this year has seen consistent gains.

SACRAMENTO – According to new state and federal employment data, California’s fast food industry has added jobs every month this year, including roughly 10,600 new jobs in the two months since Governor Gavin Newsom signed the fast food minimum wage bill into law.

Below is a breakdown of the data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which shows that the state has added roughly 20,700 fast food jobs since the beginning of this year and each month had more jobs than at this time last year:

  • January 2024: 724,900
    • January 2023: 715,000
  • February 2024: 732,700
    • February 2023: 725,100
  • March 2024: 735,000
    • March 2023: 730,900
  • April 2024: 739,500
    • April 2023: 734,400
  • May 2024: 745,600
    • May 2023: 742,600

What’s good for workers is good for business, and in his State of the State address the Governor spoke directly to the importance of building an economy for all Californians. 

“We built this economy by valuing the dignity of work, cherishing family time, and honoring labor unions. You shouldn’t have to be a CEO to live a decent life – and in California, you don’t have to be.

“The California spirit means working hard and being rewarded with a paycheck that meets your needs. All our progress on higher wages and better benefits for working people – it’s not just about the hourly pay rate. It’s about building a dignified and respectful future where everyone is included in our growth. We are a state that gives a damn about fast food workers – who are predominantly women – working two and a half jobs to get by. Because of the leadership of California’s Legislature, these hard workers finally got the raise and job security they deserved. And the companies themselves got a more stable workforce.”
Governor Gavin Newsom

In September of last year, Governor Newsom signed legislation to increase the minimum wage for California’s more than 500,000 fast-food workers to $20 per hour. It also created the Fast Food Council where workers will have a stronger say in setting minimum wages and working conditions, including health and safety standards.