Labor Chapter 9
Unemployment • Frictional Unemployment: Unemployment that always exists – when people are looking for a job, interviewing, or trying to return to the workforce • Seasonal Unemployment: Unemployment that occurs because of the weather (season) • Structural Unemployment: When the skills of a worker no longer match the job requirements • Cyclical Unemployment: Unemployment caused by the business cycle of the economy
Labor • Labor Unions: Organizations that protect the workers, more common in the North and Northeast – (much less in the South) • Collective Bargaining: An agreement between employer and employees in which the rights of the employee are usually represented by Unions. Can include wages, working conditions, and benefits • Right to Work Laws: 1947 Taft-Hartley Act prohibited the need to join a union – currently in 24 states
• Right to Work Laws: Proponents say – workers should have the right to determine if they want to join a union and pay union dues • Right to Work Laws: Opponents say – all workers benefit from collective bargaining and union protection. Some should be “free riders”
• Blue collar vs. white collar – Blue collar – working class, manual labor, usually hourly paid, usually does not need higher education White collar – management, office worker, usually salaried
• People in unions generally receive higher wages • Does more money/benefits (wages) = few workers?
Minimum Wage • Federal minimum wage is $7. 25 (2. 13 if tipped), but if tips don’t make minimum wage then the employers must make up the difference • In 2015, seven states voted to gradually increase minimum wage to $15 an hour • 29 states, or 60% of the workforce have higher wages than $7. 25 • Republicans have continually blocked minimum wage legislation
Minimum Wage • The Georgia state minimum wage is $5. 15. Employees covered under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act are subject to the federal minimum wage of $7. 25 • Those not covered under the FLSA may be paid the state minimum wage of $5. 15.
Overtime Pay • Work in excess of 40 hours per weeks should be paid at time-and-a-half • Professionals are exempt from overtime if they earn over $47, 476 • Many firms simply increased worker pay to avoid overtime
Paid Sick Leave • 36% of private sector workers don’t get paid sick leave
Paid Family Leave • Since 1993, a federal law guaranteed workers unpaid leave for up to 12 weeks for birth, serious health issues, or adoption • Three states (NJ, CA, RI) offer paid family leave – funded by employee-paid payroll taxes • Republicans blocked a national paid-leave program
• Even though there are laws against discrimination, women get 85 cents for every $1 a man earns • The right of employees to be free from discrimination in their compensation is protected under several federal laws enforced by the U. S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission: a) Equal Pay Act of 1963, b)Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, c) Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 d) Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.
• Proving a Claim • To bring a claim under the EPA, the employee must show that: a) a man and a woman; b) working at the same place; and c) doing the substantially the same job (equal work) and receiving unequal pay. • It is the filing employee's burden to prove these requirements. The third element is obviously the most difficult to prove and will be covered below. • Once the employee proves her case, the burden of proof then shifts to the employer to disprove any of the three elements. Employers can justify a pay differential by proving the pay difference is the result of: a) a seniority system; b) a merit system; c) a system which measures quantity or quality of work; or d) any reason other than gender
• The glass ceiling is the name given to the invisible barrier that prevents women from advancing
• Fighting, intoxication, or self-inflicted wounds by an employee will not receive compensation • Benefits include money for lost income, disability, loss of limbs, prosthetic devices, medical services, burial costs, and survivor benefits • Employers don’t have to pay for the insurance on agricultural workers, domestic workers, casual workers (like temporary office workers), public employees, and independent contractors • Employees cannot sue their employer for the injury