After a chaotic and controversy-stoking first week in office, President Trump still awaits the confirmation of a number of key administration appointees, including Andrew Puzder, the Labor Secretary nominee. The nomination of Puzder, a past fast food CEO who oversaw CKE Restaurants—which includes massive burger chains Carl's Jr. and Hardee's—has been met with significant backlash due in part to employment practices that, according to Vice, includes a "record of opposition to increasing the minimum wage, dispensing mandatory paid overtime, and upholding other workers' rights regulations." Now, a group of 100+ food and agricultural organizations have joined forces to oppose his confirmation.
The 105-member group, which is led by Corporate Accountability International, Food Chain Workers Alliance, Friends of the Earth, and Real Food Media, together represent more than 10 million people across the food system. This week, the coalition sent a scathing letter to Congress urging members to reject Puzder's bid, citing conflicts of interest and a past history of faulty labor practices.
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"This nomination represents another in a string of Trump administration appointments that betrays the President-elect's promise to improve the lives of working people," the group writes. The letter also lays out the number of ways Puzder's company has clashed with the Department of Labor in the past, including violations of minimum wage and overtime payment found in 60 percent of Carl's Jr. and Hardee's inspections.