Contact: Erica Farage
Legislation Puts Entire Franchise Model at Risk
(WASHINGTON, July 22) – Jyoti Sarolia, Principal at Ellis Hospitality that owns and operates seven hotel properties in California testified today in the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee (HELP) on behalf of the International Franchise Association (IFA) in strong opposition to the “Protecting the Right to Organize Act” (PRO Act) as it puts the very existence of franchise businesses in jeopardy.
Sarolia’s company, Ellis Hospitality, is named after New York City’s Ellis Island, through which her family members entered America to pursue a better life and the American Dream, and she now exemplifies through the franchise business model. Of note, immigrants and minorities have too frequently been denied equal opportunity in business, but franchising has helped thousands of our entrepreneurs overcome common societal obstacles. Over 30% of franchises are minority-owned, compared to 18% of non-franchised businesses.
“With both respect and candor, let me say this: the PRO Act is the most anti-small business bill in the history of Congress. With the stroke of a pen upon enactment, the PRO Act’s joint employer and independent contractor provisions alone would steal the American Dream of business ownership from countless entrepreneurs,” said Sarolia. “Instead, the PRO Act seeks through its joint employer and independent contractor provisions to transform a franchise system from a network of small businesses into one big business.”
Franchising is perhaps the most important business growth strategy in American history. Today, there are more than 740,000 franchise establishments, which support nearly 7.6 million jobs and $674.3 billion of economic output for the U.S. economy and is poised to help lead the economic recovery if Congress does no harm. Rather than hinder the ability of new entrepreneurs to generate wealth and support their local communities, Congress should strongly support the franchise business model.
Sarolia continued, “Indirectly, I’m also here to testify on behalf of all the bakers, physical therapists, realtors, freelancers, truck drivers, doctors, caterers, ride share drivers, insurance agents, salespeople, commercial fishermen, stylists and many more who contribute so much to the economy, and whose livelihoods the PRO Act could upend.”
About the International Franchise Association
Celebrating 60 years of excellence, education, and advocacy, the International Franchise Association is the world's oldest and largest organization representing franchising worldwide. IFA works through its government relations and public policy, media relations, and educational programs to protect, enhance and promote franchising and the more than 733,000 franchise establishments that support nearly 7.6 million direct jobs, $674.3 billion of economic output for the U.S. economy, and 2.5 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). IFA members include franchise companies in over 300 different business format categories, individual franchisees, and companies that support the industry in marketing, law, technology, and business development.