House Passes Delgado-Backed Bill to Protect Workers Rights and Strengthen Unions
WASHINGTON, DC — Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Protecting the Right to Organize Act, or PRO Act, which cracks down on common employer practices that undermine workers’ protected rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The bill also authorizes financial penalties or private rights of action when those rights are violated. U.S. Representative Antonio Delgado (NY-19) is an original co-sponsor of the PRO Act.
“From 1980 to 2014, income for the bottom half of wage earners grew by 1%, while income for the top 1% of earners grew by 205%. One way we can address widespread income inequality is by enabling our labor unions to organize and negotiate on behalf of workers. Unfortunately, attacks on our labor laws—often funded by special interest groups—have impeded the ability of unions to fight for and protect the rights of workers,” said Delgado. “Today, I proudly voted for the PRO Act which enhances workers’ rights, empowers unions to negotiate with employers, closes loopholes in federal labor laws, and increases transparency. Importantly, this legislation also combats the harmful Right-to-Work laws that seek to undermine the work of labor unions. I’m glad to see the PRO Act pass the House today, and encourage the Senate to take up these critical employee protections as soon as possible.”
The Protecting the Right to Organize Act seeks to strengthen protections for employees engaged in collective action. The bill clarifies who is covered under the NLRA and facilitates an expedited process by which workers and employers must start negotiations. The PRO Act also provides for penalties against employers who violate those rights, safeguards the right to strike, repeals prohibitions on collective action, permits fair share fee arrangements, and authorizes a private right of action for the violation of worker’s rights, all of which will guarantee more effective enforcement of the NLRA.