UPDATE: ITEM consideration has been postponed until next week, according to Mayor Parker. Today’s public comments have had mostly supporters of the wage theft ordinance, as written. There was one business group who stated they were fine with the ordinance affecting only city contractors, but they appear to want to protect non-city contractors who screw workers. What’s up with that?
Anyway, Mike Morris at the Chron has a write-up of the latest on the issue.
Today is the day in which City Council votes on the proposed Wage Theft Ordinance. As our friends at El Centro de Trabajadores remind us:
On November 13, 2013, Houston will have the opportunity to be a pioneer in ending impunity of wage theft in the City. After two years of diligent pursuance by the Down With Wage Theft Coalition, the Wage Theft Ordinance is up for vote in City Council! The Ordinance would create real consequences to unscrupulous employers who have a record of failing to pay legally owed wages to their employees and level the playing field for responsible businesses who are at a competitive disadvantage against businesses who are cheating their employees of their wages.
Join us on November 13, 2013 at 9:00 am in our fight to end wage theft. Let your City Council Member know, Houston wants the Anti-Wage Theft Ordinance to pass!
901 Bagby Houston, Texas 77002
I haven’t heard of the latest pre-vote tallies that tell us where members of Council stand, but I have heard of some who are non-committal to the proposal. And I’ve heard of at least one council member who supports something in principle, but perhaps not this proposal. Which begs the question: Has there been any actual negotiation on the language of the proposal? Any changes to appease folks like said council member? Obviously, the local press hasn’t delved deeper into this.
The bottom line is that wage theft is a problem, and it is a problem among subcontractors that work for city contractors. Beyond that, as Houston’s economy improves, we, as a city, have every reason to ensure all workers are protected from wage thieves. It’s a no-brainer to vote for the proposed ordinance to protect workers, and ultimately, taxpayers. One way or another, the taxpayers pay dearly for wage theft.
So, one more time, I respectfully ask my District J Council Member, Mike Laster, to support the proposed wage theft ordinance.