Denver, CO - Majority Leader Monica Duran and Representative Sheila Lieder today will receive awards at Colorado AFL-CIO’s Second Annual Labor Day Labor Champion Award Dinner to celebrate their work in passing laws to better support workplace conditions and boost wages for working Coloradans. Majority Leader Monica Duran will receive the State House Labor Champion Award and Representative Sheila Lieder will receive the Rising Star Award.
“Elevating the voices of hardworking Coloradans and advocating for better workplace conditions at the Capitol has been one of my biggest priorities as a legislator,” said Majority Leader Monica Duran, D-Wheat Ridge. “I grew up watching my mother and her siblings stand alongside labor activists like Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta, fighting for safer working conditions, fair wages, and the right to unionize. Receiving this award is a marker of the progress we’ve made in recent years to protect Coloradans and foster workplaces that we all deserve.”
“I’ve dedicated my career to improving workers rights’ and advocating for working class people to fight for a fair workplace on their own,” said Rep. Sheila Lieder, D-Littleton. “I proudly passed laws this session to crack down on child labor violations and improve workplace safety so children and their families can pursue justice. I’m honored to receive this award, and I look forward to continuing to make Colorado a leader in workers’ rights.”
Majority Leader Duran has passed laws to strengthen worker protections since being elected to the Colorado State House in 2018. Many of her laws protect and improve workers’ rights to receive pay for their work, including establishing a statewide prevailing wage for public projects (SB19-196), prohibiting a property owner from withholding more than 5% of the contracted pay from a contractor (HB21-1167), increasing wages for Home Care Workers (SB19-238), and modernizing the wage theft process to make it easier for workers to receive their earned wages (SB22-161).
Additional laws that Majority Leader Duran has sponsored include ensuring compliance with plumbing laws to better protect Colorado plumbers (HB19-1086), requiring a standardization of apprentice to supervisor ratio for electricians and plumbers to improve the quality of apprenticeship programs and ensure workers’ safety (HB22-1346), creating clear and fair working standards for the energy industry to support workers transition into the clean energy sector (SB23-292), and establishing the Direct Care Workforce Stabilization Board to ensure workers are being paid appropriately and working fair hours (SB23-261).
Representative Sheila Lieder has spent decades fighting for workers’ rights, serving as the President for the Denver Area Labor Federation, Vice President of the Coalition of Labor Union Women, and a policy director for Communications Workers of America.
In her first year at the legislature, Rep. Lieder passed HB23-1196, a law to strengthen Colorado’s child labor protections by allowing children, or their parents, to pursue justice and accountability for workplace violations. She also carried laws that raise awareness of apprenticeship opportunities to graduating students (HB23-1212) and requires improved data collection on apprenticeship programs to better connect Coloradans to good-paying, stable jobs (SB23-146).