The California restaurant industry is a hotbed of race discrimination and gender discrimination, according to the findings of a recent study conducted by the University of California (U.C.) Berkeley and U.C. Santa Cruz researchers.
Entitled Ending Jim Crow in America’s Restaurants,1 this study focused on evaluating the positions and pay rates for California restaurant workers of different racial backgrounds and gender identities. As part of this analysis, researchers reportedly examined wage data collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and conducted dozens of interviews with restaurant owners and managers, as well as with discrimination experts and lawyers.
The goal was to uncover the factors that contribute to discrimination against California restaurant workers in order to identify “policy and programmatic interventions” to address and eliminate this discrimination – both in California and across the U.S.
Remarking on these findings, the study’s authors have explained that:
Jim Crow laws were the state and local laws regulating racial segregation in public and private spaces … While Jim Crow regulated the enforced separation between white and African American patrons in restaurants, today, we largely find that restaurant workers are effectively segregated by race and gender by a partition between livable-wage server and bartender positions and poverty wage busser, runner, and kitchen positions, and between limited service (fast food), full service casual, and full service fine-dining restaurants… It is time to end the occupational Jim Crow that pervades the industry and ensures women and workers of color are provided genuine opportunities leading to equitable outcomes.
If you have been the target of any form of workplace discrimination, contact the Azadian Law Group, PC to speak to experienced discrimination lawyers in Los Angeles who can inform you about your options for recovery and justice.
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1: Executive Summary of this study is available here.
2: White House data regarding the gender pay gap in the U.S.
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