Must California employers pay double on holidays?
November 28, 2014
A bill soon to be introduced to the California legislature would require employers to pay double to those who work on Thanksgiving and Christmas in an attempt to curtail transforming the family holidays into shopping bonanzas. [Union Tribune]
Democratic Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez of San Diego announced her plan to introduce the bill, which would affect retailers and restaurants. She says she settled on the policy proposal in lieu of seeking an outright ban on stores opening on the holidays.
“I’ve watched how the retailers and restaurateurs continue to expand their hours and open up on these holidays that are traditionally family holidays,” Gonzales said. “What people are being called in to do now is a real slap in the face of family values, frankly.”
Gonzalez indicated the bill would not apply to police departments, hospitals and other indispensable services.
“This is not life and death,” Gonzalez said. “This is consumerism.”
A spokesperson for Wal-Mart said the retailer stays open on Thanksgiving and closes its stores on Christmas. Wal-Mart employees who work on Thanksgiving essentially receive double pay already, said spokeswoman Brooke Buchanan.
In 2013, Gonzales successfully pushed through legislation guaranteeing California workers up to three days a year of paid sick leave.