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Commerce Fraud Bureau to get new powers to investigate wage theft, other financial crimes

May 26, 2022

BY: 
Minnesota Reformer

Labor leaders are calling a bill that passed the state House and Senate on Sunday the most significant piece of legislation for combating wage theft since it was made a felony in 2019.

The bill (HF 3255), which is awaiting Gov. Tim Walz’s signature, gives the Commerce Fraud Bureau new powers to criminally investigate financial crimes along with more than $800,000 a year to hire five more investigators.

By and large, though, treating labor abuses like wage theft as criminal matters is a relatively new phenomenon, says Terri Gerstein, a labor lawyer at Harvard Law School who has studied the rise of prosecutions of employers.... Read more about Commerce Fraud Bureau to get new powers to investigate wage theft, other financial crimes

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Amazon and Starbucks Aren’t Listening to Their Workers

May 26, 2022

Sharon Block
Bloomberg Law

Unionization efforts at Amazon and Starbucks have been regarded with hostility by their CEOs, but Harvard Law School professor Sharon Block suggests the companies should view it differently. She writes that organizing efforts can be seen as a positive sign that workers value their companies enough to try to improve their working conditions rather than job hop, and suggests leaders work with employees to come up with a win-win solution.

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Can’t JetBlue please fly some must-mask planes?: An appeal to NYC’s hometown airline

May 20, 2022

By Terri Gerstein
Opinion
New York Daily News

I’m writing with a simple request: Please create some mask-required flight options for travelers who want them.

Designating some flights on each route mask-required would be easy. There’d be no need to retrofit plane interiors. No passengers would have to don tactical flight suits or special scuba gear. It’d just be a return, for a few select flights, to the rules from two months ago, hardly a staggering burden. Plus, ample mask-optional choices should reduce the horrible...

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Adding salary ranges to job listings stops people from wasting their time

May 16, 2022

Terri Gerstein
Think, NBC News

Laws requiring disclosure of salary ranges in job postings, like other pay transparency laws, reduce gender and race disparities.

Laws requiring disclosure of salary ranges in job postings, like other pay transparency laws, reduce gender and race disparities. Women still earn far less than men — 83 cents to the dollar in 2022 — and this gap is even worse for women of color: Black women made 58 cents on average, and Latina women 49 cents, for every dollar a non-Latino white man earned last year. Research has found that women are...

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Ask Help Desk: If I take a remote job, can I be forced into an office?

Ask Help Desk: If I take a remote job, can I be forced into an office?

May 13, 2022

By Danielle Abril
Washington Post

In this new era of work, employees who work at an office are finding that return-to-work policies can be tricky. We’ve heard stories from workers about companies that have changed work arrangements from remote, part-time remote to full time in-office. We’ve heard about fears over whether an employer can promise one working arrangement, only to change it weeks or months later. And we’ve heard questions about what protections unions may or may not offer workers when it comes to returning to the office. ... But employees should beware....

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Emboldened labor movement seeks to expand on successes

Emboldened labor movement seeks to expand on successes

May 10, 2022

BY KARL EVERS-HILLSTROM 
The Hill

The uptick in organizing comes as record numbers of job openings give workers more leverage than they had in previous years. Workers are often pushing for better pay, hours and working conditions, citing pandemic-induced burnout and safety concerns. 

“To have these successes is really significant to send a message that nobody should just accept that where they work is unorganizable,” said Sharon Block, a Harvard Law School...

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Poor mothers get shut out of the Child Tax Credit, our research finds

Poor mothers get shut out of the Child Tax Credit, our research finds

May 4, 2022

Analysis by Ashley Nunes
Washington Post

With the midterm elections coming, Democrats are trying to push through key legislative priorities — including
renewing the child tax credit (CTC), which gives working parents a credit for each child and will expire in December
2025. No one doubts that it will be renewed; the credit has broad bipartisan public support.

Our study shows that over 1.5 million parents — 80 percent of whom are women — may be excluded from the full
child tax credit despite working. At the current federal minimum wage, we estimate that a...

Read more about Poor mothers get shut out of the Child Tax Credit, our research finds
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Workers at a second Amazon facility on Staten Island just voted against unionizing. But that doesn’t mean the movement is slowing down

May 2, 2022

BY COLIN LODEWICK
Fortune

Though a win would have inevitably injected more momentum into the current labor organizing push, today’s loss still has the potential, according to labor experts, to further mobilize workers by laying bare the lengths to which corporations will go to defeat unionization drives.  

 

Regardless of today’s loss, the unprecedented nature of the first victory will likely keep the movement energized. “[Workers] were told that Amazon was too big, that the...

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