California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 357

Introduced by Assembly Members Chiu and Weber

(Principal coauthor: Senator Leyva)

(Coauthors: Assembly Members Bonta, Chu, Gonzalez, and Roger Hernández)

February 17, 2015

An act relating to employment.


AB 357, as introduced, Chiu. Employment: work hours: scheduling.

Existing law, with certain exceptions, establishes 8 hours as a day’s work and a 40-hour workweek, and requires payment of prescribed overtime compensation for additional hours worked.

This bill would make legislative findings and declarations relating to work hour scheduling for employees of food and general retail establishments.

Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: no. State-mandated local program: no.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

P1    1


This act shall be known, and may be cited, as the
2Fair Schedule and Pay Equity Act.


SEC. 2.  

The Legislature finds and declares the following:

4(a) More than one-half of food and general retail store
5employees nationally receive their work schedules one week or
6less in advance.

P2    1(b) According to a recent survey of employees at chain stores
2and large stores, only 40 percent of those surveyed have consistent
3minimum hours per week and the vast majority of employees find
4out from a supervisor if they are needed for the on-call shift a mere
5two hours before the shift starts. Retail industry research in New
6York City found that more than one-half of family caregivers in
7the retail industry are required to be available for on-call shifts,
8forcing them to arrange for child or elder care at the last minute.

9(c) Women are also more likely than men to work part time and
10experience unpredictability in their work schedules; one study
11found that women were 64 percent of the frontline part-time
12workforce among retail workers.

13(d) Unpredictable scheduling practices and last-minute work
14schedule changes cause workers who are already struggling with
15low wages to live in a constant state of insecurity about when they
16will work or how much they will earn on any given day. These
17practices also make it hard for employees to plan their finances
18and to plan for and obtain child care. These practices also prevent
19part-time employees from pursuing educational opportunities or
20holding a second or third job that those workers may need to make
21ends meet.

22(e) According to census data, since 2006, the number of
23 “involuntary part time employees” in California nearly tripled to
241,100,000 employees. According to the federal Bureau of Labor
25Statistics, less than one-half of the retail workforce nationwide
26works fulltime, and the number of those working fewer than 20
27hours per week has grown by 14 percent in the past decade.

28(f) According to a survey conducted in 2014 of workers who
29sell food in California, the largest producer of food in the United
30States, they are twice as likely as the general populace to be unable
31to afford sufficient quantities of the food they sell or the healthy
32kinds of food their families need, despite the financial health of
33the food retail industry. According to this same survey, workers
34who were Black or Latino were far more likely to be sent home
35early with no pay, to have a shift canceled on the same day it is
36scheduled, to not be offered a lunch break, or not be paid for all
37hours worked.

38(g) For these reasons, to ensure family and financial stability
39for a vast segment of California’s workforce, those employed by
P3    1food and general retail establishments should be afforded some
2predictability and dignity in how they are scheduled to work.