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New York City Creates Office of Labor Standards

December 11, 2015

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) recently signed into law bill 743-A, which creates an Office of Labor Standards.

Initially drafted to ensure enforcement of earned sick time, the bill establishes an office that will take on a number of labor-related tasks, including:

  • Researching, reporting, and developing programs for worker education, safety, and protection;
  • Facilitating the exchange and dissemination of information;
  • Providing educational materials to workers and employers;
  • Collecting and analyzing federal, state, and local data on the city’s workforce and workplaces;
  • Recommending efforts to achieve workplace equity for women, communities of color, immigrants and refugees, and other vulnerable workers; and
  • Receiving complaints, conducting investigations, and levying penalties for infractions.

This new law enacts a number of the suggestions made in PHI’s “Five Steps to Implementing the New Home Care Rule” — including better data collection and monitoring, enforcement of existing wage and labor rules, and educating workers and employees on labor rules.

It is PHI’s hope that the Office of Labor Standards will benefit New York City home care workers given the recent changes to labor laws that apply to these workers (e.g., changes to the minimum wage, Wage Parity, and the Fair Labor Standards Act).

— by Allison Cook, PHI New York Policy Associate

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