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Negotiations: Oregon’s Minimum Wage

We were in a different conference room than usual that day.  We were sitting at a long table with chairs on each side. The management team was looking out on the room and the employee observers.  I was sitting opposite the attorney for the management team.  

The formal negotiations had not begun, so there was chat across the table.  I don’t know how the subject of Oregon’s minimum wage became a topic.  The attorney for the management team was bemoaning the higher minimum wage in Oregon (at that time a little higher than the Federal minimum wage).  The conversation continued, I expressed that I thought the higher wage was a good thing for Oregon.  The attorney continued for a time to berate the higher wage in Oregon.  

I heard a noise and with a glance underneath the bargaining table I saw the Powell’s manager sitting next to the attorney kicking him. Not lost on the manager apparently, there were a number of employees listening to our conversation.  Part of our negotiating proposal was an increase in the hiring wage at Powells.