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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Demands related to Jobs, and Job Fairness

Create Jobs!

The goal of creating jobs is directly related to all the other goals and demands we Democrats have and is part of a key positive right that everyone should have the ability to earn an income sufficient to provide a livelihood. In practice we need to make sure we have the resources allocated to ensure that everyone who needs a job can get one and that those jobs are good ones. For that reason "Creating Jobs" is directly related to raising the Wage and Pay Equity. And it is indirectly related to other key goals in Bernie's list.

The goal of 'creating jobs' is regularly cited in RW plots to override pollution controls, seize our public properties and reallocate wealth to the wealthy, but all those programs destroy more jobs than they create, as does unfair trade laws and tax benefits to the already wealthy. On the contrary our demands all tend to create sustainable jobs.

  1. Fix our Infrastructure, Build Green Energy, Fight Climate Change

  2. Bernie's #1, #2 and most of the rest of our list, all contribute to creating jobs! A Healthy economy has demand up jobs and invites investment.

    In addition we should:

  3. Make the Unemployment Program an Employment Program -- Bring Back Hiring Halls

  4. Currently the unemployment office often does good work of helping folks who are unemployed get through to their next job. But thanks to budget cutbacks, when there are severe economic hard times it cuts off unemployment insurance just when a person is finding it hardest to find a job, and there are no provisions for folks with age, disability or other long term unemployment issues to find employment that they can handle. We have a multitude of underfunded welfare offices to help people with these problems, but most of them are inadequate and many veterans, aged people, people with physical or psychological issues get poorly served.
    At one time a person who was unemployed could go to a Union or other Hiring hall and get placed with a job. We should bring back something similar. There has to be a public/private partnership to keep people working and provide a source of employment at last resort and Hiring halls that pay people a minimum wage for being on call and pay them better if someone needs day labor or a permanent hire would fill that bill.
    The Unemployment program should become an "Employment Program" and pay people a minimum until they get a job -- and also provide employment services. It should be run at State, County, Municipal and neighborhood level and not treat unemployment as if they are criminals. Local government must be the employer of last resort both from the Worker's point of view and private employers point of view.
    The enabling Legislation would include model bills for adoption at the State and local Level. Every person attending a hiring hall would be paid the minimum living wage for 8 hours of work, and additional if actually hired.
  5. Use Hiring Halls to access Free Education, Training and Apprenticeships

  6. In addition to providing or sponsoring local hiring halls with Large Employers, local Government or Unions sponsoring them, the Government should ensure that people are properly educated and trained for work. This means that not only should there be hiring halls for workers, but those places should provide training, apprenticeship opportunities, volunteer work and education opportunities to folks in the hiring hall while being paid a minimum wage. They should be free to the laborer and the student. A college campus would not only be free to the students attending there, but the government would pay students to attend school as long as their Grade Point and performance justified it. And of course workers would be available to perform University related work while attending.
  7. Make the Minimum wage = a Living Wage. And raise that to a threshold of 10$ an hour.

  8. The minimum wage should equal the wage necessary for a person to not be poor anymore if they work 40 hours a week 50 weeks a year. It should be defined the poverty level (yearly) for a family of four divided by 2000 hours. And when there is inflation the minimum wage should change as the poverty level changes.
    An even higher "standard" wage should apply and equal the average wage for a working person. This should apply to those who have a full time or part time job in any industry. If businesses can't afford to pay their employees they should have to explain why.
    Even more important, taxes should be on income that is higher than that needed to compensate labor for their work. If a businessman has expenses; food, energy, drive time, input expenses, the businessman can deduct them from his/her business earnings. Employees should not be taxed on that part of their compensation that is necessary for them to eat, get to work, clothe themselves and educate themselves and their children. That is why it is called "wage compensation." It shouldn't be taxed.
  9. Democrats may support Corporate Welfare to help struggling employers

  10. If employers can't afford to pay the minimum wage or a standard wage, then the hiring halls should have the authority to pay hirees a living wage and run a tab of the difference for employers to be paid out of eventual profits if the employer can stay in business. It should be on businessmen to justify why they can't stay in business unless they pay oppressive wages.
  11. All Democratic candidates shall support Fair Trade Provisions

  12. If an employer hires employees outside the country at less than what the exchange rate would calculate as a fair minimum wage for a US worker in the same job in the USA than the employer shall pay a duty on the difference in value added from those employees when the goods are imported or the services are rendered. If they can't afford the duty then the Government shall remove their import license.
    An employer cannot export capital goods if it means terminating local employees. No export license shall be granted for any employer exporting capital goods if that export means termination of the local employees.
  13. All Democratic candidates shall support the letter and spirit of the Lily Ledbetter Act.

  14. The Lily Ledbetter Act already talks about Pay equity.
  15. All Persons Employed by any employer doing business in interstate commerce, with more than 50 employees or doing business with the Government shall have the right to assemble at such times convenient to them, to discuss any issue freely during such assembly, to select representatives and to petition the government of such employer with grievances or demands.

  16. Workplace Democracy as a Right

    All Persons employed by any employer whatsoever shall have the right to be consulted by that employer when major decisions are made and to be informed of changes in compensation, employment term, or benefits.

    This list is a "threshold" list. The last two items may sound radical but they are basic to principles of republicanism and good function.

    This list is a strawman and a draft. I hope that others will like the idea and run with it.

    This list relates to Demand #3 on Bernie's list "Create Jobs". Read:

More Reading (and this list will get longer):

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