Thursday, November 19, 2009

National Day of Action to Stop Wage Theft

Today, November the 19th is a National Day of Action to Stop Wage Theft. Thousands of workers in our city, and millions of workers across the country, face the theft of their wages by employers who pay below minimum wage, don't pay overtime, steal workers' tips, or don't pay workers at all.

Here's what you can do to take part in the national day of action:

1) See the results of our new wage theft survey. Today Workers Interfaith Network is releasing the results of our local wage theft survey of 141 low-wage workers in the Memphis area. We found that 2 out of 3 workers reported some form of wage theft. Some people assume that wage theft is only happening to Latino workers. What did our survey find out about whether race made a difference in rates of wage theft? Check out the results on WIN's website to find out.

2) Read Wendi Thomas's excellent column on wage theft that she wrote for The Commercial Appeal today.

3) Call your Congressional Representative and urge him/her to co-sponsor HR 3303, the Wage Theft Prevention Act. This legislation does away with a statute of limitation that only gives the Department of Labor 2 years to investigate a wage theft claim, and it lets workers file private wage theft lawsuits against employers while the Department of Labor is conducting its investigation. Right now too many workers' wage theft cases are being closed because the Department of Labor couldn't investigate them in time. This legislation would help change that.

Congressman Cohen can be reached at (202) 225-3265. Live in a different district, or aren't sure who your Representative is? Click here and enter your zip code to find out.

4) Make a donation to Workers Interfaith Network so that we can expand our wage theft work in the coming year.