(Sept. 18) – Rep. Jonathan Singer’s bill to crack down on wage theft has been cited by a local advocacy group and its national affiliates as part of a 10-point plan to strengthen the U.S. economy and rebuild America’s middle class.

The bill was endorsed by FRESC, a Denver-based group that joined with more than 20 national organizations on work and the economy to release its 10-point plan, which can be found at http://nelp.3cdn.net/c586eebbfeeeffc855_gvm6yiw2w.pdf

Wage theft takes many forms, including willful violations of minimum wage laws, failing to pay overtime, forcing employees to work off the clock, withholding an employee’s final paycheck, withholding earned tips from restaurant workers or complete nonpayment for labor performed.

“The middle class is the engine of our economy,” said Kevin Abels, executive director of FRESC, formerly known as the Front Range Economic Strategy Center. “We can’t get that engine going again if workers continue to lose billions of dollars a year due to wage theft.”

Rep. Singer (D-Longmont) introduced his wage theft bill in the 2012 legislative session. It died in the House Judiciary Committee, but Rep. Singer has vowed to try again.

“This is my top personal priority for the 2013 legislative session,” Rep. Singer said. “This is about stealing someone’s ability to join or remain in the middle class, to have a home or to have enough food to put on the table.”

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