Wage Theft News

Miami-Dade County – Mayor restores funds to the Wage Theft Program

Media Contacts

Jeanette Smith, Florida Wage Theft Task Force, (305) 598-1404

Natalia Jaramillo, Florida Immigrant Coalition, (786) 317-3524

Miami, September 23, 2011 – After a lengthy debate and vote by the Board of County Commissioners to approve a new Budget, the County’s Wage Theft Program avoided the sad fate that many basic social services, programs and organizations faced, and guaranteed its continuation.


The Wage Theft Program, that processes claims from workers who were not paid or were underpaid by unscrupulous employers, was initially included among the list of programs that would be understaffed by a lack of fund...

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Victory in San Francisco!



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 16, 2011


Shaw San Liu, Chinese Progressive Association, (415) 999-8447 | shawsan@cpasf.org (Chinese and English)

Renee Saucedo, La Raza Centro Legal, (415) 425-6575 | renee@lrcl.org (Spanish)

Tiffany Crain, Young Workers United, (916) 212-0072 | crain100@gmail.com (English)


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Local Wage Theft Campaign kicks off this Tuesday in Grand Rapids

The Micah Center and the Michigan Organizing Project have been doing the ground work to organize a campaign against Wage Theft in Grand Rapids. With the support of Grand Rapids City Mayor George Heartwell, the local effort is being this Tuesday where the Micah Center will show a new documentary, which features local workers who have experienced Wage Theft.

The event will also let people know about how they can get involved in the Grand Rapids campaign. The event will be held on Tuesday, September 20 at Hope Reformed Church, located at 2010 Kalamazoo, SE, Grand Rapids. The event begins at 6:00PM.

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States, feds share data on wage theft

The Labor Department is signing agreements to share information with nearly a dozen states, including Hawaii, and the Internal Revenue Service as it gets more aggressive in its program to crack down on businesses that cheat workers out of their wages. The information will help Labor officials target businesses that improperly label workers as independent contractors or as nonemployees to deprive workers of minimum wage and overtime pay. Misclassifying workers….


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Students, Laborers Share Experiences

One Saturday morning, a group of students gathered in Healy 106 prepared to head into the city for the day to experience life through the eyes of a day laborer.

The group of about 12 undergraduates were all participants in the Day Laborer Exchange Program sponsored by the Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor — a university program that works to improve the lives of the working class….


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The fault lines under the crust

MARILAC, Brazil — In this remote valley of sugarcane fields and cattle farms, where horses and bicycles outnumber cars and poverty binds the community like mortar, people searching for a better life have one choice: They can leave town.

The most coveted destination has long been Boston — more precisely, one high-end local pizza chain. The promise of a job at an Upper Crust shop, passed by word of mouth from one villager to the next, offered the possibility of wages unheard of in Marilac, a community of 4,140 people in the mountains of southeastern Brazil.

Over the past decade, dozens of men from Marilac have made...

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Group Wants Kalamazoo To Outlaw Wage Theft

KALAMAZOO (WKZO) — A loose consortium of church and advocacy groups that lobby for poor people and the homeless want local municipalities to pass ordinances outlawing wage theft. They claim that as many as one in four homeless, poor, young and desperate residents are offered jobs, and perform them, and are then cheated out of all or part of the promised wages.

The group took their case to the city commission this week. The State already has laws against it, but the process for handling a case is cumbersome and usually ends in a compromise settlement. They want it treated like a crime. A couple of commissioners expressed interest in exploring the idea, but no committees have been formed.

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Wage theft hurts whole community

Excerpts from the report, Wage Theft in Florida: A Real Problem with Real Solutions, which focuses on Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties and was prepared by the Research Institute on Social and Economic Policy at Florida International University:

The negative effects of illegally shortchanging workers’ wages ripple across communities and the economy. Families suffer when earnings are too low to meet basic needs. Local businesses and economies are denied vital stimulus that would flow from the additional spending of workers had they been paid all they had earned.

Honest businesses are undermined by unscrupulous competitors who practice wage theft. And governments at all levels take a hit, because they are denied taxes generated by higher earning...

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Workers’ Safeguards Strengthened by N.Y. Law

Gov. David A. Paterson signed into law some of the nation’s strongest protections against wage theft on Monday, after months of lobbying by immigrants’ advocates and labor unions that said New York lagged behind other states on the issue.

The law, which takes effect in April, will quadruple the penalties for employers who steal workers’ pay, and will protect whistle-blowers from retaliation.

Employers who pay below the minimum wage, fail to pay overtime or unfairly garnishee wages are especially rampant in restaurant, retail and construction businesses where illegal immigrants make up much of the work force, according to a report this year by the National Employment Law Project. In New York City, the report said, lost wages add up to more than $18.4 ...

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