Jimmy John’s Non-Compete Agreement Bans Employees From Working at Restaurants that Serve Sandwiches

jacob and renesmee

I ate at Jimmy John’s twice last weekend. I was at Geek Girl Con, and there’s a Jimmy John’s right down the street from the Convention Center, and if you thought I wouldn’t make as many excuses to eat there as possible, you don’t know how much I love those sandwiches.

It’s like they’re Jacob and I’m Renesmee, and they stared at me with their hot pepper sandwich eyes the day I was born.

And, to continue the Twilight metaphor, they’re also apparently super-controlling.

The Huffington Post got a copy of Jimmy John’s non-compete agreement, which states that workers cannot work at a competing restaurant for at least two years after their Jimmy Job. What counts as a competing restaurant? Any restaurant that is within 3 miles of an existing Jimmy John’s that also earns at least 10% of its revenue from sandwiches.

The non-compete agreement lists the types of foods it considers sandwiches, including pitas and “wrapped or rolled sandwiches.” That means they’re even stricter about what constitutes a sandwich than the USDA, which—as NPR noted—does not consider a burrito, a wrap, or a hot dog a “sandwich.”

Jimmy John’s employees are currently putting together a class-action lawsuit which includes this non-compete agreement as well as the wage theft issue that came out earlier this summer.

It gets worse. When Jezebel reported this story, they added a note that Jimmy John’s founder, Jimmy John Liautaud, liked to shoot endangered species for sport. (I followed up on a lot of links to see if this was true. Here’s a summary from Chicagoist, which includes an image of Liautaud with a dead elephant.)

So… I have to break up with this sandwich shop. It’s funny that I’m able to rationalize the poor treatment of employees as “everybody does that kind of thing,” but I draw the line at the image of a man hugging a dead leopard.

Anyway, it’s done. I took my Jimmy John’s poster down off my wall and moved my picture of Ada Lovelace over to fill the space.

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