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BUSINESS
March 18, 2001
The companies mentioned in "In Fast Food, Some See Fast Track" [March 12] are a perfect example of why people come to this country illegally, and why business loves to hire hard-working, cheap, illegal workers. Just as an example, go visit one of these restaurants in a predominantly white or black community. You will see a disproportionate number of middle-aged Latinos working there. As for suburban American youths leaving fast-food jobs for "cooler" jobs, that's not quite true.
ARTICLES BY DATE
BUSINESS
April 13, 2014 | Michael Hiltzik
The continuing push for higher minimum wages across the country has much to recommend it, but the campaign shouldn't keep us from recognizing a truly insidious practice that impoverishes low-wage workers all the more. It's known as wage theft. Wage theft, as documented in surveys, regulatory actions and lawsuits from around the country, takes many forms: Forcing hourly employees off the clock by putting them to work before they can clock in or after they clock out. Manipulating their time cards to cheat them of overtime pay. Preventing them from taking legally mandated breaks or shaving down their lunch hours.
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OPINION
January 30, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
We've all been there at some point, sitting in a restaurant ordering dinner when the waiter sneezes and mumbles an apologetic, "Sorry, I'm fighting a cold. " Why is he at work? Especially at a job that brings him close to other people? Maybe it is because he can't afford to miss the shift, something that a recently introduced Assembly bill could help remedy. AB 1522, introduced by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego), would require companies to provide a minimum of three days annual paid sick leave for any employee not covered by a collective bargaining agreement (which usually includes sick leave guarantees)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 29, 2014 | By Laura J. Nelson
During a packed and sometimes tense four-hour public hearing Saturday, Los Angeles County transportation officials heard a litany of complaints from transit riders who said a proposed Metro fare hike would strain the budgets of students and working-class families. A crowd of more than 500 activists, students and low-wage workers packed Metro's downtown boardroom and spilled into the cafeteria as speaker after speaker pressed elected officials to avoid fare increases or service cutbacks.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 6, 2010 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
Low-wage workers in the Los Angeles area are even more likely than their counterparts in New York and Chicago to suffer violations of minimum wage, overtime and other labor laws, according to a new UCLA study being released today. The study found that almost nine out of 10 low-wage workers surveyed in Los Angeles County had recently experienced some form of pay-related workplace violation, or "wage theft." Almost one in three reported being paid less than the minimum wage and nearly 80% said they had not received legally mandated overtime.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 17, 2010 | By Elaine Woo
Beth Shulman, a Washington, D.C., labor lawyer and author who championed the rights and welfare of low-wage earners, died Feb. 5 at Georgetown University Hospital. She was 60. Diagnosed last fall with a malignant brain tumor, she died of complications of pneumonia, said family spokeswoman Rochelle Lefkowitz. "Beth was a visionary, activist, strategist and chronicler on behalf of workers throughout her career," said Kathy Bonk, executive director of Communications Consortium/DC, a public interest media group that collaborated with Shulman on the Fairness Initiative on Low-Wage Work, a combined effort by 20 nonprofit organizations.
BUSINESS
April 13, 2014 | Michael Hiltzik
The continuing push for higher minimum wages across the country has much to recommend it, but the campaign shouldn't keep us from recognizing a truly insidious practice that impoverishes low-wage workers all the more. It's known as wage theft. Wage theft, as documented in surveys, regulatory actions and lawsuits from around the country, takes many forms: Forcing hourly employees off the clock by putting them to work before they can clock in or after they clock out. Manipulating their time cards to cheat them of overtime pay. Preventing them from taking legally mandated breaks or shaving down their lunch hours.
NEWS
November 22, 2000 | NANCY CLEELAND, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Through determination and pluck, a few dozen immigrant production workers have achieved what years of wrangling by labor leaders and anti-globalization activists have not: They stopped a factory from moving to Mexico. U.S. District Judge Carlos R. Moreno sided with the newly unionized workers Tuesday, handing down an astonishing preliminary injunction that prevents a Gardena jewelry manufacturer from going through with a planned relocation to Tijuana. Quadrtech Corp.
NEWS
January 21, 2001 | TOM GORMAN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
It's perhaps the most ubiquitous crime in this boom town: the daily exploitation of migrant workers who toil in restaurants, hotels and construction sites. An untold number of them, authorities say, are denied the basic protections of federal and state labor laws on minimum wage, work breaks and job safety. Teenagers illegally operate meat slicers in mom-and-pop delicatessens. Maids are denied their 10-minute breaks while readying rooms for the next wave of tourists.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 25, 2001 | From a Times Staff Writer
The Santa Monica City Council unanimously has passed an ordinance to protect low-wage workers from retaliation for supporting union organizing efforts or higher wages. The action late Tuesday night came as thousands of hotel employees are losing their jobs or working reduced hours in response to a slump in tourism. The new law, passed after 10 workers testified in its support, would prohibit hotel and restaurant owners from targeting vocal union supporters for layoffs or demotions.
OPINION
January 30, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
We've all been there at some point, sitting in a restaurant ordering dinner when the waiter sneezes and mumbles an apologetic, "Sorry, I'm fighting a cold. " Why is he at work? Especially at a job that brings him close to other people? Maybe it is because he can't afford to miss the shift, something that a recently introduced Assembly bill could help remedy. AB 1522, introduced by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego), would require companies to provide a minimum of three days annual paid sick leave for any employee not covered by a collective bargaining agreement (which usually includes sick leave guarantees)
BUSINESS
June 27, 2013 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO - Anita Herrera spent years cleaning offices in San Diego, but her boss never gave her a legally required lunch and rest break during a seven-hour shift. When she eventually asked for a breather, her employer cut her hours. So, in 2009, Herrera filed a complaint with the California Labor Commissioner's Office. Investigators corroborated the allegation and got a court order requiring her former employer to pay her $20,000 in penalties for the wage-and-hour law violations.
BUSINESS
May 28, 2013 | By Ricardo Lopez
Memorial Day unofficially launches thousands of summer vacations, but about a quarter of all Americans will not be paid while they soak up some rest and relaxation. A recent study said the United States is the only advanced economy that does not require paid vacation days or holidays. The report, released Friday by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, revisited a 2007 study that compared the U.S. with nearly two dozen other countries and also found it to be the only nation that does not require paid vacation or holidays.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 21, 2013 | Steve Lopez
Last week, I visited a South Los Angeles woman whose story should embarrass us. It's a story that's not uncommon, and deserves the full attention of the next mayor of the city. Alicia, whose full name I'm withholding because she's afraid her boss would fire her, is a maid who started working for a major hotel chain in Hollywood about three years ago. Her hourly pay is $8.65, and her last raise was 5 cents an hour. I kid you not. They threw her an extra nickel. Toward the end of the mayoral campaign, local labor leaders tried to win support for candidate Wendy Greuel by suggesting that she would raise the minimum wage in Los Angeles to $15 an hour.
BUSINESS
April 17, 2013 | By Shan Li and Diana Marcum, Los Angeles Times
Central Valley farmers, Southern California bankers and Silicon Valley executives have all struggled to find workers - and they say an outdated immigration policy has been to blame. They're all hoping that a bipartisan group of U.S. senators will have the answer when it unveils its plan, as early as this week, to overhaul federal immigration laws. Their stance: Reform couldn't come quickly enough. "What's at stake is the future of our economy, whether we can remain the most entrepreneurial nation," said Steve Case, co-founder of America Online and now chairman of investment firm Revolution.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 9, 2013 | By Wesley Lowery, Los Angeles Times
For decades, Long Beach hotel workers fought for better wages. But their efforts to start unions mostly fizzled. So last year, union backers tried something new: a ballot measure. Voters swiftly gave them what years of picket lines and union-card drives had failed to secure - a $13-per-hour minimum wage for hundreds of Long Beach hotel workers. A similar shift happened in San Jose, where voters in November awarded workers a higher minimum wage not just in hotels, but citywide.
NEWS
August 19, 1992 | DANIEL M. WEINTRAUB, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Thousands of low-wage workers who help care for homebound elderly and disabled people became the latest casualties of the state's protracted budget battle Tuesday when the Wilson Administration said that the government has no legal authority to pay them. Gov. Pete Wilson, acting through his Department of Social Services, rejected a request from Controller Gray Davis to provide payroll information Davis said he needed to issue checks to the workers.
BUSINESS
March 6, 2013 | By Marc Lifsher, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO - Alarmed that abusive bosses are increasingly threatening to turn employees over to U.S. authorities when they complain about working conditions, state lawmakers and immigrant-rights advocates are calling for tougher laws to combat the practice. The tactic is used against low-wage, undocumented workers in California if they complain about not being paid what they're due or about unsafe working conditions, said Assemblyman Roger Hernandez (D-West Covina). He is chairman of the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee, which highlighted the issue at a hearing in the state Capitol on Wednesday.
BUSINESS
November 29, 2012 | By Alana Semuels
New York -- A week after hundreds of Wal-Mart employees walked off their jobs to demand better wages and the freedom to form a union, fast-food workers from some of the nation's largest chains are staging a similar walkout. Employees from McDonald's, Wendy's, Burger King, Taco Bell and KFC are staging protests in locations around New York City today, demanding $15 an hour in pay - more than double the minimum wage some receive - and the right to form a union. “What we're finding is that there's huge support among fast food workers to form a union and to fight back against the poverty wages that they're being paid,” said Jonathan Westin, organizing director of New York Communities for Change , which is helping to organize the strike.
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