Rep. Eshoo firmly believes in the rights of workers. The retirement benefits and pensions of employees should be secure, and their right to earn a livable wage, work in a safe environment, and organize should be protected.
In the 113th Congress, Rep. Eshoo is a cosponsor of the following bills in support of workers’ rights:
- H.R. 1010, the Fair Minimum Wage Act, will increase the federal minimum wage gradually over three years, from $7.25 to $10.10 per hour. In all years following this three-year period, the rate will be indexed to inflation. Moreover, the Act will increase the required cash wage for tipped workers from today’s $2.13 per hour to $3.00 immediately, and then annually according to a formula until the tip credit reaches seventy percent of the regular minimum wage.
- H.R. 1286, the Healthy Families Act, which requires employers to provide paid sick-leave to their employees. To avoid imposing an excessive burden on small businesses, companies employing fewer than fifteen workers would be exempt from these rules, while those already offering paid sick-leave would not have to change their policies. By encouraging sick workers to stay home rather than risk spreading contagious diseases to their coworkers, the legislation allows businesses to benefit from a healthier, more productive workforce.
- H.R. 377, the Paycheck Fairness Act, will amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (the Equal Pay Act) to more effectively address the fact that women in America make only seventy-seven cents on the dollar compared to men. The Act will require employers who try to justify paying a man more than a woman for the same job to show that the wage disparity is not sex-based, but job-related and necessary. The Act also prohibits employers from retaliating against employees who discuss or disclose their own salary information with their co-workers, and strengthens the remedies available to wronged employees.
- H.R. 1755, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which prohibits covered entities (employers, employment agencies, labor organizations, or joint labor-management committees) from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity in both public and private sector employment, with exceptions for religious entities and small businesses. This bill prohibits discrimination on the basis of an employee’s actual or perceived sexual orientation and is an important safeguard against discrimination for all American workers.
In addition to cosponsoring these bills, Rep. Eshoo has consistently voted to support workers’ rights in the House of Representatives. In the 112th Congress, Rep. Eshoo voted:
- Twice to protect the use of Project Labor Agreements on military construction projects;
- Eight times to keep wage protections in FY2013 appropriations legislation;
- To protect the right to organize by voting against a mandate that forces a delay in union elections and gives employers time to use coercive anti-union tactics; and
- To preserve the only National Labor Relations Board remedies available to workers whose employers retaliate against them for engaging in union formation or other protected activities by moving jobs to a new site or overseas.
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