Warren plan proposes predictable schedules for part-time workers

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) is calling for employers to give part-time workers more predictable schedules and benefits as part of the presidential candidate’s “Fair Workweek” plan released Tuesday. 

The new proposal builds on Warren’s comprehensive labor plan announced in October that aims to raise wages and strengthen the rights of workers to organize. 

“That plan would use all the tools I will have as president to shift power back towards working people, boost America’s labor movement, and help create an economy that works for everyone,” Warren said in a statement Tuesday. 

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“But,” she continued, “as I travel the country talking to workers at town halls and in selfie lines, I hear that too many face another giant challenge in supporting their families: unpredictable work schedules that leave them with too few hours to afford necessities and no control over their time.”

Warren’s latest plan aims to mitigate that challenge which she said disproportionately impacts workers of color, especially women of color. Women of color have a 5 to 10 percent greater exposure to scheduling instability even when controlling for educational attainment and comparing workers within the same company, the campaign said. 

The plan would require employers with 15 or more workers to give two weeks of advance notice of work schedules and compensate workers for changes within the two week window. The plan would also give workers the right to decline work hours that are not listed.

Employers with more than 5,000 workers would have to ask employees how many hours they want to work and when they are available, as well as offer additional work to qualified existing part-time workers before hiring new workers or contractors, based on the plan. 

Her plan also calls on employers to provide benefits, such as paid family leave and employee retirement benefits, to part-time workers to avoid incentivizing companies to keep workers part time to avoid paying for benefits.

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Written by Alan Smith

Alan Smith

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