October 9, 2015 |
CITY Councilman Bill Greenlee yesterday introduced legislation that would create a new city position of wage-theft coordinator to review and adjudicate employee complaints and to fine employers found to have broken the law. During the average week in Philadelphia, 36,400 low-wage workers are not paid minimum wage, 29,500 are not paid for all the overtime they are due and 28,200 aren't paid for off-the-clock work, according to a report from the...
August 28, 2015
THE FEDERAL COURT of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that the U.S. Department of Labor does indeed have the authority to extend federal wage and hour laws to the nation's 2 million home-care aides. In Pennsylvania, this decision means that 125,000 home care aides will now be subject to federal labor protections, including guaranteed minimum wage, overtime pay and compensation for travel between clients. Though Pennsylvania already guarantees state minimum wage and time and a half for overtime for its home-care workforce, compensation for travel time is a significant change.
August 15, 2015
ISSUE | STATE STORES Save a buck in Pa. Some time ago, I compared the prices of 12 bottles of good wine available in State Stores and then looked in shops in Maryland and New Jersey, and I came to this conclusion: If you want less selection and higher prices, you'll be in favor of privatizing the state's liquor monopoly. As the single largest purchaser of wine in the country, Pennsylvania can and does offer lower prices and a wider selection than some private stores. We'd be foolish to privatize.
August 13, 2015 |
IN TODAY'S lead Tattle item, we not only get info about two of America's favorite child stars, but a brief lesson in why trickle-down economics is a joke. According to USA Today , Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen and their fashion empire, Dualstar Entertainment Group, have been targeted in a class-action suit by 40 interns, past and present. Dualstar is the parent company of the twins' fashion labels, Elizabeth and James, and The Row. The suit alleges that Dualstar failed to pay interns for menial tasks, and claims they should have been paid minimum wage because they were doing similar kinds of jobs as their paid colleagues, without receiving any academic or vocational credit.
August 6, 2015
ISSUE | WAGES Minimum rate hike not all it seems An increase in entry-level wages by more than 100 percent would ignore the serious unintended consequences for the economy and the employees it's intended to help ("$15-an-hour movement brings hope to city workers," July 29). Numerous nonpartisan organizations have found that mandated increases lead to negative employment impacts, including the Congressional Budget Office, which recently concluded that an increase to the oft-cited level of $10.10 would lead to a loss of approximately 500,000 jobs.
July 15, 2015 |
Richard Trumka, a former mine worker and a graduate of Villanova's law school, leads the nation's largest labor federation - the AFL-CIO - so he hears workers gripe about their pay and benefits all the time. But, those workers have pay and benefits. On Monday, Trumka, in the offices of Community Legal Services in Philadelphia, sat quietly as lawyers, workers, and advocates talked about people who work and don't get paid. "Most of us know that wage theft goes on, but the depth and the breadth of what goes on escapes most of us," Trumka said.
June 6, 2015
ISSUE | SPECIAL ATHLETES Relay a message Despite advances that have been made over the years, men, women, and children with disabilities face negative stereotypes on a daily basis. This summer, Special Olympics and Bank of America are providing a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for people to join the movement for equality. We're bringing the Unified Relay Across America to cities and towns throughout the country, including Philadelphia, where it continues Friday. The relay will give Philadelphians an unprecedented opportunity to show their commitment to inclusion and respect for all by simply getting involved.
June 5, 2015 |
SARINA SANTOS can't remember the last time she could afford to take her family out to dinner. What's fresh in her mind is the day, three weeks ago, when she was fired from her job as a baggage handler at Philadelphia International Airport. As a baggage handler, Santos was employed by PrimeFlight Aviation Services, a Nashville-based company that provides baggage handling, aircraft and terminal services to more than 40 airports across the country. Santos said she was fired from PrimeFlight on May 5 because she fought for higher wages - employees currently earn $7.25 per hour, which is below the city's minimum wage of $12. Her attendance, which she had been previously warned about, was cited by supervisors as the reason for her dismissal, she said.
May 29, 2015
YOU PROBABLY missed it. The TV news gave little if any news coverage to the presidential campaign announcement of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders ("Hey, we have 'serious' candidates like Donald Trump, Carly Fiorina, Ben Carson and Ted Cruz to deal with," I'm guessing they'd say) but the speech was definitely an organic barnburner live from Ben-and-Jerry-land. Sanders wasn't more than a minute or two into it when he belted out what should become his campaign motto: "Today, we stand here and say loudly and clearly that: Enough is enough.
May 16, 2015 |
The $15 minimum wage movement received a boost Thursday when a member of City Council introduced a bill to put the issue before Philadelphia voters in November. The measure, if approved by Council and Mayor Nutter and passed by voters, is nonbinding: It only calls on city and state officials to pass a $15 minimum wage. But advocates say it would gauge support, place pressure on Harrisburg, and lay groundwork for a court battle should the city challenge the presumption that only the state can set a minimum wage.