This Pay Message From One Chick-Fil-A Operator Has Employees Fuming

The operator of a Chick-Fil-A in Centerville, Utah ruffled feathers with a message to employees containing a not-so-veiled threat. The message advised employees that they would be individually receiving notifications about "pay adjustments/raises." Okay. That's good, right? But then came another message, reading, "Also, if you talk to another team member about your pay rate, your pay will be deducted down to minimum which is 7.25 an hour."

"There is no reason to be comparing pay rates and as leaders we are not allowed to share other team members [sic] pay rates as well. Like I said, I will be reaching out to you this week with your new pay rate. Thanks," the message continued. Redditor cant-Karate-good posted the full text of the memo to r/ChickFilAWorkers, along with the caption, "Centerville, Utah. Threats from the operator about wages." 

The Reddit universe was not happy, with a number of commenters pointing out that prohibiting employees from discussing wages with one another is a violation of the National Labor Relations Act.

The Chick-Fil-A workers are allowed to engage in concerted activity

"I'm pretty sure that you're legally protected when it comes to discussing wages with others," r0805 wrote in the comments of the Chick-Fil-A thread. Redditor yudongletho seconded that opinion, saying, "Federal law prohibits any form or retaliation against employees who decide to discuss wages and pay." And they're both right. According to the National Labor Relations Board, "Federal law protects employees engaged in union activity, but that's only part of the story. Even if you're not represented by a union – even if you have zero interest in having a union – the National Labor Relations Act protects your right to band together with coworkers to improve your lives at work."

"You have the right to act with coworkers to address work-related issues in many ways. Examples include: talking with one or more co-workers about your wages and benefits or other working conditions, circulating a petition asking for better hours, participating in a concerted refusal to work in unsafe conditions, and joining with coworkers to talk directly to your employer, to a government agency, or to the media about problems in your workplace," the law explains. "Your employer cannot discharge, discipline, or threaten you for, or coercively question you about, this 'protected concerted' activity."

Yep. The law specifically mentions discussing wages with co-workers as a protected right. And if workers at the Chick-Fil-A in question decide to pursue the issue, we're guessing feathers are going to fly.