Chipotle Agrees to $20 Million Settlement with NYC to Compensate 13,000 Workers Denied Paid Leave

On Tuesday, New York City Mayor Eric Adams and New York City Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) Commissioner Vilda Vera Mayuga announced a settlement with Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. to compensate workers who were denied sick leave and manageable schedules.

Under the Paid Safe and Sick Leave Law, all employees in New York City must be given sick leave, which they can accrue at the rate of one hour of leave for every 30 hours worked for up to 56 hours. Recently, the law was expanded to add an extra four hours of paid leave per child under the age of 18, per COVID-19 booster. The DCWP found that Chipotle failed to “give employees their work schedules 14 days in advance,” “requir[ed] employees to work extra time without their advance written consent,” “fail[ed] to allow employees to use accrued safe and sick leave,” and would require some employees to work a closing shift one day and then an opening shift the next morning; the DCWP claimed that these constituted violations of the Fair Workweek Law.

This settlement comes after a four year long investigation that started after 160 employees and the union 32BJ SEIU. After negotiations had concluded, Chipotle agreed to pay “a total amount of $1,000,000 to the City […]; $50 per workweek per Class Member” for an amount up to $20,000,000 as part of their Consent Order. This will apply to anyone who worked for Chipotle in New York City from November 26, 2017 to April 30, 2022.

Mayor Adams proclaimed that “Today’s settlement with Chipotle is not only a victory for workers by securing up to $20 million in relief for approximately 13,000 workers, but also sends a strong message, as the largest worker protection settlement in New York City history, that we won’t stand by when workers’ rights are violated.”