Assembly Approves Vital Measure to Protect
Statement by California Labor Federation Executive Secretary-Treasurer Art Pulaski
When a temporary worker is cheated out of wages, forced to work injured or otherwise has her rights violated, there’s often little recourse. Many of those workers have been to the Capitol in recent weeks, telling their stories and advocating for change. Today, the California Assembly sent a strong message in support of temp workers by approving AB 1897, a bill that would hold employers accountable for the exploitation of temporary and subcontracted employees.
When large corporations like Walmart and Taylor Farms outsource work to fly-by-night subcontractors, they shouldn’t be off the hook when workers’ rights are abused. Yet, that’s precisely what’s happening all too often in our economy today. A vicious game is played with the rights of workers in which companies blame subcontractors, subcontractors blame corporations and workers are left holding the bag, wondering ‘Who’s the Boss?’ AB 1897 establishes joint liability between the corporation and contracting agency for serious labor violations like wage theft and unsafe working conditions.
With the temporary economy growing leaps and bounds, the Assembly’s action today puts California at the forefront of the national movement to protect these workers who are often vulnerable to exploitation. We urge the State Senate to add its voice in support of temporary workers by approving this measure and sending it to Governor Brown.