Handing a victory to advocates of a higher minimum wage, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear a legal challenge to Seattle’s ordinance mandating a phased-in hourly pay increase to $15.
The High Court’s refusal to take on the case allows a lower-court ruling to prevail in favor of the new ordinance.
Plaintiffs led by the International Franchise Association (IFA) filed the case with a unique approach: Avoiding a head-on challenge to the hourly increase, attorneys argued the law discriminates against Seattle’s franchised businesses because they are components of multi-state business networks.
Under Seattle’s new minimum-wage law, companies employing more than 500 employees must fully implement the wage hike over a three-year period; firms employing less than 500 are allowed a seven-year time frame to apply the law.
“Seattle’s ordinance is blatantly discriminatory and affirmatively harms hard-working franchise small business owners every day since it has gone into effect,” said IFA president, Robert Cresanti.
“The big business lobby has thrown everything they got at Seattle workers, but they keep on losing, and the economy continues to boom.”
[Reuters] [franchise.org] [workingwa.org] [Photo courtesy namebrandpolitics.com]