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What 7-Eleven's franchising struggles could mean for restaurant chains

Working Lunch: The restaurant business may be getting a preview of what's ahead from c-stores and Amazon.

Sometimes the clearest preview of what’s ahead for restaurants can come from another industry. This week’s edition of Working Lunch underscores that truism with its look at the ongoing battle between 7-Eleven and its franchisees, as well as what a union victory at Amazon operations in New York City could mean for foodservice.

Align Public Strategies principals Joe Kefauver and Franklin Coley speak with Jeff Hanscom, VP of state and local government relations for the International Franchise Association, about a decision from the Supreme Court of Massachusetts that has a direct bearing on the strife within 7-Elecen.  Franchisees contended in a suit decided by the court that they are little more than glorified store managers who should receive a minimum wage and the full protections extended to workers under Massachusetts law. As the discussion reveals, the decision could have a bearing on the franchise model per se.

Kefauver and Coley also look at how organized labor prevailed in its long struggle to unionize a piece of Amazon. They tie the developments in New York to the victories Starbucks is racking up in units across the country.

As always, the pair concludes with Align’s signature legislative scorecard, a look at the legislative, regulatory and other political developments that are percolating in Washington and statehouses.


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