The 2016 legislative session may have been short but together we made great strides for hardworking Oregonians. Hundreds of you turned out for hours of hearings and shared your stories of why raising the minimum wage, ending profiling, and stopping wage theft are essential to having a fair shot.
As legislators head home, here’s the rundown of what your support helped make possible.
Raised the Minimum Wage
Last week Governor Brown signed SB 1532 and made the minimum wage increase official. As a result over 100,000 minimum-wage workers will receive a raise this July and when the raise is fully phased in, it will positively impact the lives of over 600,000 Oregonians. This law sets the standard that whether you work in a field or a factory, a small town or a big city, everyone deserves a wage that allows them to afford the basics.
HB 4003, also signed by the Governor into law, directs the Attorney General and the Work Group on the Prevention of Profiling by Law Enforcement to continue meeting and to issue a report with recommendations for legislation by December 1, 2016. The work group was established by the legislature in 2015 to help build a system to identify, record, and correct profiling by Oregon law enforcement agencies.
Stopping Wage Theft
We began the session with a bill intended to make it more difficult for companies to get away with cheating workers out of pay. However, a key provision of the bill was removed and despite the bill’s passage, the barriers for workers to reclaim their stolen wages remain. The reality is that it’s going to take more to fix what’s broken with our system and we’ll continue to work towards solutions that help workers who have been shortchanged.
Thank you for helping us make the Fair Shot agenda a reality. Your work has helped thousands of Oregonians over the past year and our work together is just getting started.