Some states have raised their minimum wages, passed paid sick leave, and upheld their workers’ right to organize. Others, not so much. So how do the states stack up? Oxfam has produced a best to worst states index, focusing on wage policies, worker protection policies, and right to organize policies.
Wage policies mean not just the minimum wage but how the minimum wage compares to a living wage and whether cities and towns are allowed to pass their own laws. Worker protection policies mean equal pay laws, paid family leave and paid sick leave, fair scheduling laws, sexual harassment protections, and accommodations for pregnant and breastfeeding workers. Right to organize encompasses providing collective bargaining and wage negotiation to teachers, police, and firefighters; legalizing project labor agreements; and not having so-called right to work laws in place.
The number one state is actually the District of Columbia, followed by California, Washington state, Massachusetts, and Maine. The bottom five states are Virginia, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, and North Carolina.
Where does your state rank?
● AT&T workers ended their strike and reached a tentative deal with the company.
● The Fund for the Public Interest has long raised money for environmental groups by paying low wages and churning through canvassers who can’t meet its high quotas. Now, staff say, the group is engaging in "textbook union busting" as workers talk about organizing.
● The Trump administration’s plan to shed federal employees, and particularly scientists, by moving parts of the USDA to Kansas City has worked so well that they’re bringing back retirees in Washington, D.C., to fill in for some of the departing employees.
● Ninety contractors at Google have filed for a union election, with more than two-thirds having signed union cards.
● California's Assembly Bill 5 would be a huge step forward for limiting gig economy abuses. It NEEDS to pass.
● Want some good news for Labor Day? The AFL-CIO has a round-up of worker wins.
● This isn’t as cheerful: According to the Trump National Labor Relations Board, misclassifying workers as independent contractors doesn't violate the National Labor Relations Act. So just go ahead, apparently.
● There was a dissenter on that decision:
● Buy union for your Labor Day picnic:
● Teachers aren’t done yet: