A new report from the Economic Policy Institute documents the concentrated assault on organized labor, particularly in the public sector, that was launched in the states in the wake of the Republican takeover of many state governments in 2010. Such things as:
Four states passed laws restricting the minimum wage, four lifted restrictions on child labor, and 16 imposed new limits on benefits for the unemployed.
States also passed laws stripping workers of overtime rights, repealing or restricting rights to sick leave, undermining workplace safety protections, and making it harder to sue one’s employer for race or sex discrimination.
Legislation has been pursued making it harder for employees to recover unpaid wages (i.e., wage theft) and banning local cities and counties from establishing minimum wages or rights to sick leave.
For the 93 percent of private-sector employees who have no union contract, laws on matters such as wages and sick time define employment standards and rights on the job. Thus, this agenda to undermine wages and working conditions is aimed primarily at non-union, private-sector employees.
Taking over the House and having a working majority gummed up the gears in DC, but in the states, things are much more serious.