Restaurant Brands staff get pay rise of up to $1 per hour under new contract
Fast food workers around the country have won a pay rise of up to $1 an hour, after a lengthy battle.
Restaurant Brands, which owns KFC, Pizza Hut, Carls Jr and Starbucks, has reached an agreement with Unite Union for all staff to receive an increase of between 60 cents and $1 an hour back-dated to April 1.
Under the new deal, a KFC shift supervisor will get $22.77 an hour for ordinary time worked, and a Starbucks barista will now get $17.18 an hour.
Restaurant Brands' first offer of a 50c an hour pay rise was rejected by Unite Union members who went on strike on April 22.
The average hourly wage for Restaurant Brands staff is now about $17.70 an hour. That compares with the minimum wage, which is $15.75 per hour.
Under the contract new Carl's Jr and KFC workers' pay will rise to $16.87 an hour, once they have completed basic training.
Restaurant Brands chief executive Russel Creedy said: "The overall package of terms and conditions of our employees is better than our competitors in the sector and includes a faster pathway for new employees to increase their skills and build their careers".
"This collective agreement will put our staff even further ahead".
Restaurant Brands was the first in the fast food sector to scrap zero-hour contracts and move to guaranteed days and fixed hours of permanent work, Creedy said.
Prior to signing the new agreement, it was reported KFC supervisors, who were mostly women, were being paid $1.80 an hour less than cooks, who were mostly men. Cooks were given a $2.50 pay rise last year.
Creedy said that issue arose when people who were certified to be a shift supervisor opted not to work as one, and were paid less for the shifts when they were not supervising.
He said people who were supervising a shift would get the full supervisor rate, which was higher than that paid to cooks. The new agreement cemented that, he said.
The refusal to increase pay comes after Restaurant Brands announced on Thursday a profit of $26 million after tax, up $1.9m from the previous year.