Washington State Labor Council (WSLC) will be going to the State Capitol in Olympia with a packed agenda this year. Last November’s election resulted in stronger majorities of pro-labor Democrats in the 2019 legislative session that began Jan. 14. WSLC, which coordinates the legislative efforts of 600 AFL-CIO-affiliated unions, will push lawmakers to pass a “Shared Prosperity Agenda.” Some highlights:
- Secure schedules Require retail and food employers to provide work schedules two weeks in advance and compensate workers if their schedules are changed.
- Workers’ rights Make farm workers eligible for overtime pay. Bar employers from imposing “non-compete” agreements on workers (with just a few reasonable exceptions). Guarantee that hospital nurses and medical technicians get uninterrupted meal and rest breaks.
- Tax fairness Levy a capital gains tax on profits of over $25,000 on the sale of stocks and bonds.
- Jobs and job training Inventory public buildings and put them on a schedule to be retrofitted to improve energy use and environmental health. Restore funding for community and technical colleges that was cut during the recession.
- Safety End single-member crews for trains carrying hazardous materials.
- A second look at privatization Require contractors that perform services that used to be done by public employees to meet performance metrics and accountability measures.
MORE: See a more complete list of WSLC’s legislative agenda here.