L.A County Agrees to Pay Grocery Workers $5 Per Hour for “Hero Pay” Mandate

Grocery workers in Los Angeles County will now be paid $5 per hour for the “hero pay” mandate…
grocery workers

Grocery workers in Los Angeles County will now be paid $5 per hour for the “hero pay” mandate and this will become effective on Friday. This “hero pay” mandate will last 120 days.

The Board of Supervisors at the L.A County voted to mandate the pay bump for grocery store or companies with at least 300 employees across the nation. The vote was in favor of the pay mandate. This measure is applicable to unincorporated areas alone and it will benefit almost 2,500 hourly grocery workers.

These workers have put their lives on the line since the beginning of the pandemic to keep our food supply chain running and provide access to medicine our families need. Many are working in fear and without adequate financial support, while their employers continue to see profits grow and top executives receive steep pay bonuses.  

Supervisor Hilda Solis

Supervisor Kathryn Barger was against this measure and such voted against it, maintaining that many essential workers will not benefit from it and as such, might have unplanned consequences.  She said that officials have made effort to make retailers stay in food deserts in unincorporated areas like Altadena’s Grocery Outlet.

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Several cities such as San Jose, West Hollywood, Santa Monica, and Berkeley have attempted to pass or passed some hazard pay mandates since the beginning of this year. In some days time, California Grocers Assn may challenge the county’s ordinance in court.

We’re going to be forced to sue [the county] if it passes, and that’s just unfortunate because it means we will comply obviously with an ordinance that has been passed legally, and the time clock starts as to making it harder for independent businesses doing business in the county of Los Angeles.

The California Grocers Assn’s executive

These mandates have been resisted by the local Chamber of Commerce groups. These groups maintained that these mandates only target grocers who operate their businesses with very low profit margins and as such, don’t have enough capital to absorb the costs.

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