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IPFS News Link • California

Calif. fast-food chains slash workers as $20-an-hour minimum wage looms

•, by Shannon Thaler

In the months leading up to the wage mandate, California eateries, particularly pizza joints, have established a plan to cut jobs, according to state records obtained by The Wall Street Journal.

Pizza Hut and Round Table Pizza — a Menlo Park, Calif.-founded chain of 400 pizza parlors, mostly on the West Coast — have said they plan to lay off around 1,280 delivery drivers this year, according to records that major employers must submit to the state before large layoffs, The Journal reported.

Pizza Hut already sent notices to employees informing them of their last day.

Michael Ojeda, a Pizza Hut driver for eight years in Ontario, Calif., received one of the notes from Pizza Hut franchisee Southern California Pizza in December telling him that his last day of work would be in February.

Southern California Pizza — which operates 224 Pizza Huts in the greater Los Angeles area — offered $400 in severance if Ojeda stayed through February, according to The Journal.

But Ojeda, who told the outlet that he made hundreds of dollars a week in wages and tips as a delivery driver, decided to claim unemployment instead. 

"Pizza Hut was my career for nearly a decade and with little to no notice it was taken away," said 29-year-old Ojeda, who was supporting his mother and partner on his Pizza Hut delivery wages. 

Representatives for Pizza Hut did not immediately respond to The Post's request for comment.

A spokesperson for Round Table Pizza confirmed to The Post that the individuals being laid off are delivery drivers.

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