Policy Matters applauds Cleveland City Council for Passing Wage Theft Ordinance
Posted December 05, 2022 in Press Releases
Cleveland City Council voted tonight to approve the Wage Theft and Payroll Fraud Prevention Ordinance, a move that will hold dishonest employers accountable, help working Clevelanders make ends meet, and make sure our city budget is not rewarding companies who steal from their workers. Over the past year, the Guardians for Fair Work coalition, which includes Policy Matters Ohio, has advocated for municipal wage theft protections with support from Cleveland City Council President Blaine Griffin, Councilmember Rebecca Maurer and the Bibb administration. Policy Matters Ohio Executive Director Hannah Halbert released the following statement about the ordinance:
“No matter our race or the kind of job we do, every working person should be paid the full amount for all the hours we put in on the job. The people who are paid the lowest wages are more likely to be cheated out of their full pay by dishonest employers. Three in five Ohio wage theft victims paid less than the minimum wage are women. Nonnative English speakers are much more likely to be victims. Black and white workers experience wage theft at a similar rate, but employers steal more money from Black workers, who tend to have fewer options to leave a job after experiencing wage theft.
“Giving the Fair Employment Wage Board new powers to oversee wage and hour protections for the city will ensure that Clevelanders’ federal right to be paid for all the hours they work is protected.
“Now that the ordinance has passed, City Council and the Bibb administration must pass a 2023 budget that provides the Fair Employment Wage Board with all the resources needed to protect working people and hold unscrupulous employers accountable. Guardians for Fair Work and Policy Matters Ohio will continue to advocate for worker-centered policies.
“The COVID-19 pandemic and recovery proved that our economy depends on the contributions of all working people –from the janitors who clean our office buildings to C-suite executives. This ordinance is an important signal that leaders in Cleveland recognize the inherent value and dignity of all work.”
Facts about wage theft: