Scott Statement on Bill to Undermine Workers’ Rights

WASHINGTON Committee on Education and Workforce Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after House Republicans introduced the so-called “Save Local Business Act.” This bill would amend the National Labor Relations Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act to prevent employees from holding joint employers accountable for wage theft and unfair labor practices.  

“Labor and employment laws have long held that, where more than one employer has the right to control the terms and conditions of employment, they may be liable as joint employers. However, the so-called ‘Save Local Business Act’ dramatically narrows the traditional definition of ‘employer.’ 

“H.R. 3441 immunizes joint employers from liability, even if they share contractual control of wages, benefits, scheduling or discipline. Workers who seek to hold their employers accountable for violating wage and hour laws or refusing to collectively bargain will lose under this bill. Real wages have been stagnant for decades, and workers are increasingly employed by temporary staffing firms or working as permatemps. On top of that, this bill strips workers of their legal rights to secure the wages they have earned or to bargain for a better life.

“While framed as a bill to help protect the independence of small businesses that operate as franchisees, legal experts point out that the bill will insulate franchisors from liability. H.R. 3441 will likely harm small franchisees by leaving them on the hook for their franchisors’ decisions.”

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