Romero Estrada: Measure L Helps Workers and Generates Millions for Anaheim

I love my city and want to see it prosper. That is why I want to set the record straight on the false information circulating about Measure L.

Opponents of Measure L are well funded by Wincome, a Hong-Kong based developer, that receives millions of dollars in tax subsidies from Anaheim taxpayers.

They will do and say anything to keep raking in our tax dollars while paying their workers poverty wages. Don’t fall for their scare tactics.

As Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait said, “The only people I find who support these subsidies seem to be the ones who are making money off them in some way.”

Here are the facts about Measure L:

  • Measure L will raise wages to $15 per hour for an estimated 10,000 hard-working housekeepers, janitors, cooks, security officers and other workers in the Anaheim Resort.
  • Measure L will cover workers at Disney because of a subsidy agreement Disney has with the City of Anaheim that dates back to 1996 and lasts until 2037. Learn more about this subsidy here.
  • Measure L will generate an estimated $140 million for our economy. When workers earn more, they spend more.
  • Over 300 small business owners support Measure L because it helps workers and it helps Anaheim.

Measure L is simple. If a corporation receives tax subsidies from the City of Anaheim, they must pay their workers a minimum wage of $15 per hour, and allow them to keep their tips.

A recent study conducted by Occidental College and the Economic Roundtable found that Disneyland Resort employees struggle to make ends meet:

  • 73% do not earn enough money to pay for basic expenses
  • 68% are food insecure
  • 11% reported being homeless or did not have a place of their own to sleep in the past two years

Glynndana Shevlin, a food and beverage concierge at the Disney E-Ticket Club said, “I have worked at Disney for 30 years, but I have been homeless twice in the past three years. Even though I work full time, I often have to choose between buying medicine and food because of Disney’s low wages.”

And what about tips? It’s standard practice for hotels not to give workers all the tips they earn. For instance, if there is a 20% service charge on your bill, the worker will likely get 15-16% of it, and the hotel keeps the rest. That’s why the City of Santa Monica banned the practice. Measure L will ensure workers get 100% of their tips.

Shannon Johnson, a room service employee at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel said, “Measure L will help us put meals on our table without having to work 60-70 hours a week.”

It is unacceptable that Disney and other big tourism developers continue to profit from millions in taxpayer subsidies while almost three-quarters of Disney workers say that they do not earn enough to cover basic expenses every month.

It’s only fair that corporations that receive millions of our tax dollars pay their workers a living wage. It’s good for workers and it’s good for Anaheim.

Vote yes on Measure L on November 6th.

For more information go to: www.YesMeasureL.com.

Karen Romero Estrada is one of the proponents of Measure L, a resident of Anaheim and a research and policy analyst at OCCORD. 

For a different view on this issue, consider: 

Ament: Voters Should Reject Measure L and Insist on Fair Wage Policies

Opinions expressed in editorials belong to the authors and not Voice of OC.

Voice of OC is interested in hearing different perspectives and voices. If you want to weigh in on this issue or others please contact Voice of OC Involvement Editor Theresa Sears at TSears@voiceofoc.org