IFA Statement on Julie Su Nomination to Head U.S. Department of Labor

February 28, 2023

Su has supported policies that would dismantle the franchise business model and eviscerate franchisee equity in their businesses

WASHINGTON – The International Franchise Association (IFA) today released the following statement on President Biden’s nominee for U.S. Department of Labor, Julie Su, who currently serves as Deputy Secretary of Labor. IFA cited Su’s track record of policies harmful to franchised businesses and her history of advancing new law rather than enforcing existing law as the role was intended.

“The franchise community has strong concerns about President Biden’s nomination of Deputy Secretary Julie Su to be the next Secretary of Labor,” said Michael Layman, senior vice president of government relations and public affairs. “Deputy Secretary Su has been consistently hostile to small businesses throughout her career, and she mismanaged California’s unemployment insurance program as head of the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency. Based on her record, she does not deserve a promotion from a largely operations role to the principal policymaker at the Department. Just as the U.S. Senate rejected David Weil because he was anti-small business and willing to make new law rather than enforcing existing law, senators should reject Julie Su.”

On March 17, 2023, IFA sent a letter to leaders of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, sharing the organization's concerns with Su's nomination and urging the Senate reject the nomination. Read the letter here

Su’s record against small business includes:

  • Su has aggressively supported the FAST Act, which gives authority to government appointees to decide wages and working conditions at independently owned restaurants across California. Over one million Californians signed a petition to reject the FAST Act and present the law to state voters on the 2024 ballot.
  • As Secretary of the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency, she strongly supported California’s AB 5, legislation that upended the use of independent contracting in the state, threatening millions of independent workers the right to pursue their livelihood as they choose – ultimately rejected by California voters.
  • Also in this role, Su was responsible for administering California’s unemployment insurance program through its Employment Development Department (EDD) which is estimated to have cost California taxpayers over $11 billion - and as much as $31 billion - in fraudulent claims, with billions more estimated to be improperly paid. See more.
  • Lastly, Su has supported policymaking rather than enforcement, singling out specific industries versus enforcing existing law. She once stated that regulators “can’t fine people into compliance” but instead should look at “entire industry structures” in a desire to dramatically overhaul workplace protections well beyond what Congress has enacted.

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About the International Franchise Association:

Celebrating over 60 years of excellence, education, and advocacy, the International Franchise Association (IFA) 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 approximately 790,492 franchise establishments that support nearly 8.4 million direct jobs, $825.4 billion of economic output for the U.S. economy, and almost 3 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.