Employee-Friendly Bills In Front of California Legislature

As of March of this year, pending before the California legislature were bills that would continue to assure that the state would be looked upon as one of the most employee-friendly states in the nation. It is certainly one of the most carefully regulated.

“As California businesses have grown, so has the number of workers attracted to this diverse state,” says the California Employers Association (in existence since 1937).  Legal requirements sometimes supersede federal laws and are subject by up to six different regulatory agencies.

Throughout the state, there are city wages and living wages (the minimum hourly wage deemed necessary for individuals to meet basic needs) which supersede California’s state minimum wage laws, per the CEA.

As an example, San Francisco increased its minimum wage to $9.79 per hour in 2009 (from California’s minimum wage of $8.00 per hour, as of 2008, and the federal minimum wage of $7.25 as of 2009).  San Francisco also requires contributions towards health benefits and transportation.

One bill before the House, AB59, would expand family leave rights as it seeks to significantly augment the rights currently put in place by the Family and Medical Leave Act.

Another, AB10, would raise the minimum wage an additional .50 from $8.00 to $8.50. A third bill, Proposition 19, would provide employment protection for employees who smoke medical marijuana with a doctor’s note.

As of this week, at least one of these—the increase in wage—was up for consideration.

Additionally, several other bills affecting employee rights were scheduled for this week:  one, Bill SB432, would help prevent or reduce injuries to hotel employees by providing fitted sheets and long-handled tools.

Another bill, SB747, would require medical and mental health professionals to take a test on “cultural competency, sensitivity and best practices” while treating persons who profess to be gay.

Under AB889, yet another bill due to be decided this week, domestic workers would be added to a list of those covered by worker rights laws. They’d be granted meal and rest breaks, overtime pay and other protections.

To find out more, go to: http://www.employers.org/files/resources/HRDifferencesCA.pdf   and go here: http://www.callaborlaw.com/archives/cat-new-laws-legislation.html

Interested in this topic for yourself or your employees? See C4CM California Labor and Employment Law Update Training Seminar:




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