Today’s News and Commentary – June 3
The Seattle City Council has approved a $15 hourly minimum wage — the highest minimum wage in the nation. As the Seattle Times reports, the unanimously approved program will be implemented over the next seven years. City projections predict that “by 2025… all workers will be earning a minimum wage of $18.13 an hour, nearly double the state’s current $9.32 an hour.” Commentators at New York Magazine, the L.A. Times, and Forbes discuss potential implications of the new law.
The United Auto Workers voted to raise dues by 25% to compensate for their dwindling strike fund, representing the first UAW dues increase since 1967. The Detroit Free Press reports, discussing the debates which led up to the decision. The Wall Street Journal notes that a likely next president of the UAW – Dennis Williams, current UAW Secretary-Treasurer – seems ready to change the two-tier wage system that separates workers in Detroit plants.
At Vox, Matthew Yglesias discusses the pending Harris v. Quinn decision – a decision Yglesias notes “could essentially turn all states into right to work states for the purposes of the public employees.”
The New York Post offers criticism of how the Department of Labor calculates the numbers in its jobs report, arguing that the use of “performance enhancing estimates” allow a jobs outlook which is stronger than perhaps merited.
Recently, the NLRB struck down a non-solicitation policy contained in an employee handbook. In Food Services of America, Inc. and Paul Louis Carrington, 360 NLRB No. 123, the Board determined that handbook language which “expressly provides that solicitations are limited to non-working hours and … non-work areas” was an impermissible restriction on Section 7 activity. The National Law Journal reports, and the NLRB opinion is available here.