|Protect the wages of workers. Take Action Now!|
$4.6 billion. Billion with a B. That’s how much women who earn tips at work could stand to lose each year if a proposed Department of Labor rule that makes tips the property of employers goes into effect.
Tell the Department of Labor: We Won’t Let You Take Workers’ Tips
This callous and unfair rule would do away with an Obama administration regulation — and longstanding practice — affirming that tips are the property of the employee who earns them. Instead, it would allow employers to take the tips their employees earn and use them as they see fit, as long as they pay their employees the (incredibly low) federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. This rule has the backing of the powerful National Restaurant Association, which is looking to line the pockets of restaurant owners at the expense of the staff who make their businesses profitable.
The Department of Labor and the lobbyists who support this rule are trying to push it through quickly, before we can make our voices heard. Please send your message now saying you oppose this rule!
Women make up two-thirds of tipped workers, and they already face long hours, low wages, and disproportionately high rates of sexual harassment and assault on the job. And this rule would only make them more vulnerable to harassment as they must try to please both customers AND their employers in order to keep their tips.
Instead of making it legal for employers to steal employee tips, the Department of Labor should be encouraging employers who rely on tipped workers for their profits to adopt policies and practices that protect employees from sexual harassment and assault at work. And the agency should promote raising the minimum wage and abolishing the lower tipped minimum cash wage altogether so that all working people — tipped and non-tipped alike — can count on a fair minimum wage.
Thank you for support!
We the Resistance is our fight to protect our rights and freedoms and to defend the most vulnerable among us through powerful collective action. Every conversation you have with a loved one about the issues important to you, every call you make to Congress, every rally you attend is a part of that resistance. Join us — sign on to the We The Resistance manifesto.
|A petition was started by Progressive Maryland on Organize For to:
Get The Corrupt Bail Industry Out Of Maryland Politics.
Last Wednesday, members of Progressive Maryland, including myself and other community leaders held a press conference calling out Senator Nathaniel Oaks and other lawmakers for fattening their pockets with thousands of dollars from the bail industry in exchange for blocking bail reform. We are demanding that every elected official who has received money from bail lobbyists, return the money and refuse to sponsor bills that come from the bail industry.
This is a total slap in the face to the people of Maryland, especially our most vulnerable communities. Despite the potentially fatal harm in holding people in jail because they can’t afford bail, many lawmakers are accepting dirty bail money and neglecting their constituents in order to protect the industry’s cash flow. Our legal system is not a game for corporations to collect money every time someone goes to jail. These are our real lives. It’s time that this ends once and for all.
Money bail is the fuel that fires the system of mass incarceration which seeks to swallow up Black, Brown and poor people whole. When our people are stuck in jail they run the risk of losing their families, homes, jobs and sometimes their lives. This impacts their emotional, mental and physical well-being and causes severe trauma that people have to continue to live with. Meanwhile, elected officials and bail agencies are racking up tens of thousands of dollars in cash off of poor, mostly Black, people who can’t afford their freedom, guaranteeing them a profit no matter the outcome of the case. Just like within almost every other aspect of the criminal justice system, racial disparities run rampant in the assignment of money bail. In Maryland, Black defendants were charged premiums of at least $181 million over five years while defendants of all other races combined were charged $75 million.
Last week, Maryland’s 2018 Gubernatorial annual report was released and so far it’s showing that Lexington National Insurance Company and Fred Frank Bail Bond are the leading contributors to Maryland electeds from the bail industry. In 2012, Lexington National collected over $120 million in premiums from families of people locked up. Some of the legislators who have historically received the largest amounts, Bobby Zirkin and Joseph Vallario just under the Governor Larry Hogan and Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford, have yet to file their contributions. It’s likely that they’ll be reporting large donations from bail lobbyists this year mirroring previous years. Zirkin who represents Baltimore County has received nearly $80,000 in donations from dirty bail money since 2001. Both Vallario and Zirkin chair judiciary committees in the house and senate, both have the power to stand up to the bail industry and put an end to their exploitative practices in the communities that they represent. However, with the both of them being major beneficiaries of the bail industry, they’ve chosen profit over the people. They can no longer hide under the guise of being for the people while selling us off to the highest bidder.
Accepting money from an industry that exploits Black and poor families during their most difficult times, causes apathy and distrust of politicians. Money bail keeps our people locked up and desperate to get out, while the industry, lawmakers and law enforcement officials are benefiting, this ends now!
Larry Strafford, Executive Director of Progressive Maryland