don’t let this go into overtime – Working Washington


We know it’s a busy time of year, but there are just three days left to make sure our voices are heard when it comes to protecting the 40-hour workweek. Click here to make your voice one of them & tell them you want to see WA expand overtime rights.

Washington State Dept. of Labor & Industries has spent the last several months working on updating our state’s overtime salary threshold, which would restore overtime pay for hundreds of thousands of salaried workers. Now, they’re asking for comments on overtime by the end of the year (12/31 at 5 pm).

They seem to be trying to make it hard for anyone who isn’t a big business lobbyist to be a part of this. They announced these plans a few days before Thanksgiving. They held hearings the week after Thanksgiving. Now they’re asking for comments on New Year’s Eve. And it’s all happening during the busiest time of year for food & retail workers.

But we can’t let them keep us out of the process, because the outcome will be a huge deal. The salary threshold hasn’t been updated since the 1970s, which means we’ve been waiting 40 years for this.

And since then, things have gotten pretty off track. Back when the rules were last updated, more than 60% of salaried workers got time-and-a-half pay when they worked over 40 hours a week. Today, just 7% of us get overtime pay.

Submitting an official comment can be intimidating, but it’s vital that L&I hears from actual workers, not just big business lobbyists and corporate lawyers. So we’ve built a tool to make it easy for you to submit a comment in just a few minutes by answering a few simple questions.

Let’s start the new year off right and make sure we’re set up for more big steps forward on workers’ rights in 2019…click here to build your official comment to L&I and tell them why restoring overtime rights matters to you.

Happy New Year,
Working Washington

Demand a Democracy that Works for Everyone


Voter suppression was rampant throughout the midterm elections. Millions of voters were purged from rolls, polling places were shut down, and discriminatory gerrymandering diluted the power of people’s voices.

Despite efforts to silence Americans, voters delivered a mandate – and an opportunity – to move our democracy forward. It’s time for Congress to listen.

Right now, the House of Representatives is putting together a package – called H.R. 1 – to make it happen. H.R. 1 is a comprehensive package of reforms that includes protections against voter suppression, independent redistricting commissions, automatic voter registration and political spending restrictions.
But it’s up to us to push the House leadership to make H.R. 1 as strong as it can be – especially as special interest groups and others who prefer the status quo try to weaken it.

We need a democracy where voters are protected from discrimination and can make themselves heard at the ballot box. A democracy where electoral districts are drawn fairly, so that every voter’s ballot is worth the same. A democracy that isn’t bought and paid for by the highest corporate bidder. And a democracy where ordinary Americans – more women, people of color, and working people – can run for office without relying on special interest Big Money.

HR1
Just imagine what a Congress that took our democracy seriously could accomplish

Onwards,
Amy Korngiebel
Director of Distribution
Brave New Films

Poisonous drinking water near military bases – you can help and have twice the impact


At least 7 million Americans living near 131 military sites could be exposed to unsafe levels of PFAS, a set of chemical compounds linked to health risks like cancer, fetal health disorders, and liver damage.¹ That’s the disturbing finding of a recent UCS report that looks at contamination levels at military sites across the country.² Documents we obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request showed levels of PFAS that exceeded established safety thresholds at 130 of the 131 sites.

ucsusa.org

In one of the documents we uncovered, a White House staffer called a pending government report on PFAS a “public relations nightmare” and tried to suppress the science and the danger from the public.³

It is unacceptable that our government allows military families and their neighbors to be exposed to toxic chemicals. Along with our partners, we’re using research to draw media attention and demand action from our leaders, but we need your help to make sure our government rights this wrong.

We’ve already made important progress on the PFAS fight. Our team of experts have combed through the evidence on PFAS contamination and are bringing the facts to light: existing rules covering PFAS contamination are insufficient to deal with the emerging body of research.

The time for a stronger, science-based national response on PFAS, based on the latest research and highest standards for public safety, is long past due. Our efforts have pushed the Environmental Protection Agency into beginning preliminary inquiries to bolster safeguards against PFAS contamination; we need to hold their feet to the fire until our drinking water is 100 percent safe.

With PFAS contamination and so many other threats, we need to get the science right.

It’s a long road ahead in order to keep people safe from PFAS in drinking water. UCS will be there every step of the way—elevating science and the facts in the policymaking process, uncovering political interference at the EPA, and bringing public pressure on behalf of the environment and public health.

Thank you for sharing our vision of a world where our leaders put our health, safety, and environment first.

John Mace   ucsusa.org
Membership Director
Union of Concerned Scientists

resources:

1.https://blog.ucsusa.org/derrick-jackson/action-needed-to-address-the-us-militarys-pfas-contamination
2.https://www.ucsusa.org/center-science-and-democracy/preserving-science-based-safeguards/toxic-threat-pfas-contamination-military-bases
3.https://blog.ucsusa.org/michael-halpern/bipartisan-outrage-as-epa-white-house-try-to-cover-up-chemical-health-assessment

ucsusa.org