Democrats & Liberals Archives

Worker's Benefits We Should Be Fighting For

photo-1516216628859-9bccecab13ca.jpg

Photo Credit: Unsplash

As the 2020 election cycle goes into full swing, many American workers are faced with the question of who they think will best represent their interests going forward into the new decade. On November 3rd, the office of President of the United States of America, 35 out of the 100 seats of the United States Senate, and all 435 seats in the United States House of Representatives will be contested. Before America heads to the voting booths, we should take a serious look at worker’s benefits and rights we should be fighting for and investigate what candidates are the most likely to enact positive change.

Worker’s Compensation

Worker’s compensation laws are some of the few ways in which corporations are forced to acknowledge that employees are living, breathing people and not simply a commodity or tool that can be discarded after it becomes damaged. The basic idea behind worker’s compensation laws is that, if you do happen to become injured performing labor or services for a business entity, they are obligated to provide assistance in your recovery and financial security until you are able to once again enter the workforce.

As far as social insurance programs go, worker’s compensation is one of the oldest in the United States and arguably one of its most important safety nets. Unfortunately, worker’s compensation laws are decentralized and there are no federal minimum standards set for how a state government runs its worker’s compensation programs. This has led to varying levels of benefits and coverage for workers from state to state, and many states have changed worker’s compensation programs to provide shorter claims filing windows, making it harder for workers to get their qualified benefits.

Because there is no standard set by the federal government and an individual state can have wildly different rules, it is important to research your state’s worker’s compensation program. For instance, in Georgia, the term “injury” is actually quite broadly defined and applies not only to injuries sustained in sudden accidents but to some injuries that develop over time gradually. Other states such as Alabama have far worse worker’s compensation laws and lower payouts than the relatively generous policies of Georgia, so it is wise to do your homework. Do some digging on which prospective state representative has any policy regarding worker’s compensation or its reform and vote accordingly.

Family Leave

Another instance where the lack of any sort of government regulation leads to the exploitation of U.S. workers is in regards to family leave. Americans are some of the most overworked and underpaid workers in any developed country, largely due to the fact that the federal government enables corporations to implement policies that are designed specifically to cut costs regardless of the impact it has on workers. While individual states can implement laws requiring businesses to provide paid family leave, in 2017, only three states had mandated such a law. By this year, five states and Washington, DC, were expected to have paid family leave.

While the federal government does require that businesses across the US offer up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave per the Family Medical Leave Act, there are a number of ways in which a business can skirt this rule or an employee may not even be eligible. Businesses with less than 50 employees are exempt from the FMLA, and employers may even request medical certification from a doctor as long as the information does not fall under ADA or HIPAA protections.

Federal workers recently won a huge battle in regards to paid family leave with the inclusion of the Federal Employee Paid Leave Act into the massive National Defense Authorization Act of 2020. The FEPLA allows for 2.1 million federal workers to take up to 12 weeks paid leave following an adoption, childbirth, or fostering. This is, of course, fantastic news for the millions of federal employees in the US, but there are certainly candidates at both the state and presidential level that would work to ensure paid family leave for all employees.

Health Insurance

Though the passing of the FEPLA is certainly exciting for federal workers, it is somewhat of a pyrrhic victory. The Trump administration, for the third year in a row, has proposed further cuts to federal workers’ health benefits as well as to their retirement benefits and pay. The White House estimates that these austerity measures would save the U.S. $5 billion in 2020, which is about half of the amount of the funding that they have secured for Trump’s passion project, his “big beautiful wall”.

Healthcare reform is a seemingly bipartisan issue, though the establishment of both parties balk at the idea of a public option, citing the idea that it would unfairly compete with private insurance companies. Universal healthcare is actually a massive boon to unionized workers’ ability to negotiate for higher pay instead of having the issue of healthcare dominate contract battles. A single-payer system actually gives unions more bargaining power in the long run, despite what you’ll hear from the Republican Party and moderate democratic candidates.

Yes, labor unions fought hard for the health insurance benefits that they have, and some unions feel that it would be wrong to undo that hard work by instating universal healthcare. However, it should be noted that with universal healthcare, unions would have the ability to argue for far more favorable wages and working conditions. The benefits of universal healthcare policies and thus the candidates both local and federal that support them far outweigh anything lost as far as worker’s rights go.

At the end of the day, all worker’s rights are important in the US. People have fought and died for the worker’s rights we have today. However, we should not remain complacent and instead look forward to a future that is better for the generations to come after us. This is a wildly important election for the future of worker’s rights. Do your research and vote accordingly.

Posted by jhamilton at February 19, 2020 5:25 PM
Comments
Comment #453791


Thanks, you have made a wonderful post. I love and appreciate your commitment.waiting to read your next post

Posted by: gurukul at February 22, 2020 5:57 AM
Comment #453901

Though the passing of the FEPLA is certainly exciting for federal workers, it is somewhat of a pyrrhic victory. The Trump administration, for the third year in a row, has proposed further cuts to federal workers’ health benefits as well as to their retirement benefits and pay. The White House estimates that these austerity measures would save the U.S. $5 billion in 2020, which is about half of the amount of the funding that they have secured for Trump’s passion project, his “big beautiful wall”.White Hat Seo vs Black Hat SEO

Posted by: Ft Tech Help at February 25, 2020 11:22 AM
Comment #454031

Good Tag line, i like this…..
At the end of the day, all worker’s rights are important in the US. People have fought and died for the worker’s rights we have today. However, we should not remain complacent and instead look forward to a future that is better for the generations to come after us….

Posted by: SEO ABID at March 1, 2020 1:25 AM
Comment #454681

I read all your blog it’s so much informative and gives a lot of knowledge to use that strategy in our forum in a different way basically we are from Office interior is No. # 1 office furniture suppliers in Dubai offering custom made office furniture, Wholesale distributor of office tables, chairs and Luxury office furniture dubai. Again Thank You so much for your helping content!

Posted by: office interior at March 30, 2020 5:21 AM
Comment #454919

I aspiration more authors of this form of content could positioned occurring long past the duration you probably did to research and write so ably. i am utterly inspired long past your vision and notion. Formation Indesign

Posted by: jahangir khatri khatri at April 9, 2020 5:06 AM
Comment #454926

i’d in the back of to thanks for the efforts you have got made in writing this text. i’m hoping the thesame quality sham from you in the well beforehand as adroitly.. Emergency loans

Posted by: MA Designs at April 9, 2020 5:43 AM
Comment #455237

Thank you for sharing this blog with everyone, the content of the article is very good, quality images, hope that you will continue to share better things in the future.
 

Posted by: neymasport at April 21, 2020 11:20 PM
Comment #455334

Thanks for sharing this blog with us. it is very helpful
But you are missing these things

Posted by: Nipun Gandhi at April 26, 2020 3:46 AM
Comment #456767

I am really impressed with the content. It is authentic content. I like the style of writing.

Posted by: Lesa Cote at June 26, 2020 6:42 AM
Comment #457679

Thanks for sharing this blog with us. it is very helpful

Posted by: Giay Da Bong at July 22, 2020 10:31 PM
Post a comment