Houston Passes Anti-Wage Theft Ordinance

The City of Houston has taken a bold step forward by passing an ordinance that will properly punish companies that commit wage theft and payroll fraud by stealing from their employees. After a public hearing on Tuesday, the council voted on Wednesday to adopt the ordinance becoming Texas' first city to take such an action.

According to a press release from the Fe y Justicia Worker Center, "The ordinance establishes a process housed in the Office of the Inspector General through which employees can bring wage claims forward. Companies with a documented record of wage theft - either final adjudication from a court of competent jurisdiction or a criminal conviction - will be included in a publicly listed database on the City’s website and will be ineligible for city contracts or sub-contracts. Additionally, any company with a criminal conviction of wage theft will be ineligible to receive occupational permits and licenses."

Wage theft is often a side effect of employee misclassification. The practice where a company will attempt to gain an unfair business competitive advantage over ethical companies who properly classify their workers as employees. By doing so, they often do not pay overtime and will frequently pay the workers less hours than they actually work.

ConstructionCitizen.com reports, "The ordinance establishes a process housed in the Office of the Inspector General through which employees can bring wage claims forward. Companies with a documented record of wage theft - either final adjudication from a court of competent jurisdiction or a criminal conviction - will be included in a publicly listed database on the City’s website and will be ineligible for city contracts or sub-contracts. Additionally, any company with a criminal conviction of wage theft will be ineligible to receive occupational permits and licenses."

This is a bold step in the right direction to helping make Houston a place where companies treat their workers fairly and according to the law and where companies can compete fairly and not by cheating. I commend the Mayor and City Council for their actions in this case.

Now then, if the Texas Legislature would step forward and do their part...  More on that to follow soon.

Issues: 

Comments

 

© 2015 TexasGOPVote  | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy