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California Workers' Rights: A Manual of Job Rights, Protections and Remedies

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Alexis Manzanillaand Laurel Lucia

Expanding Covered California for All by Ending Immigration Status-Based Exclusions

Blog post exploring the factors surrounding a proposal to expand Covered California to undocumented Californians by creating a “mirror marketplace.” This would give undocumented Californians, who are prevented by federal law from participating in Covered California, the ability to shop, compare, and enroll in health plans.

UC Berkeley Labor Center

Factsheet: Workforce Standards for an Equitable Economy

California’s economy is growing, but millions of workers are being left behind. The state can do more to ensure every Californian has access to a family-sustaining career by incorporating workforce standards into public spending and regulations. This factsheet describes workforce standards and how policymakers can apply them in this critical moment for climate and infrastructure spending.

UC Berkeley Labor Center

Inventory of US City and County Minimum Wage Ordinances

Across the country, cities and counties have become laboratories of policy innovation on labor standards. Before 2012, only five localities had minimum wage laws; currently, 56 counties and cities do. To help inform policymakers and other stakeholders, the UC Berkeley Labor Center is maintaining an up-to-date inventory of these laws, with details on wage levels, scheduled increases, and other law details, as well as links to the ordinances.

Laurel Lucia, Enrique Lopezliraand Ken Jacobs

California health care minimum wage: New estimates for impacts on workers, patients, and the state budget

This brief analyzes the impact SB 525 is projected to have on workers, patients, and the state budget in the first year of the policy. It is an update of our June 2023 and April 2023 briefs, both of which analyzed preliminary versions of the bill.

Coral del Mar Murphy-Marcos

New ways for organizers to lead

At the latest Labor Center Lead Organizer Training 19 organizers strengthened their organizing skills and learned to cultivate new leaders within their organizations. The frontline leaders from teacher, grocery, and flight attendant unions, and Black, Latino, and Filipino worker centers, among others, learned to adapt different leadership approaches to different circumstances.

Sara Hinkley

California’s public sector staffing crisis

Until the state can make much-needed improvements to its property and commercial tax structure, officials will continue to propose drastic service cuts. Eliminating or freezing vacant positions in state and local budget processes may be a convenient way to cut expenses, but without substantive staffing analysis the impact of leaving those positions empty could pose a severe burden on existing staff, Californians, and the economy.

Miranda Dietzand Laurel Lucia

Measuring Consumer Affordability is Integral to Achieving the Goals of the California Office of Health Care Affordability

Consumer health care affordability has deteriorated over the past two decades in California due to rising premiums along with increasingly common and increasingly large deductibles for job-based coverage. This report documents these trends and their implications for Californian’s health and financial well-being, and recommends how California’s new Office of Health Care Affordability can monitor consumer affordability metrics in order to ensure that consumers benefit from the office’s efforts to control growth in per capita health care spending.

Annette Bernhardtand Sara Hinkley

What Workers and Unions Stand to Gain from Recent Executive Orders on Artificial Intelligence

We outline core principles for how government action on AI can benefit public and private sector workers, and comment on how two recent executive orders reflect those principles. Our goal is to help inform the significant work that lies ahead for federal, state, and local governments in their efforts to model responsible use of AI.

Lisa Kresge

Negotiating Workers’ Rights at the Frontier of Digital Workplace Technologies in 2023

Workers and their unions took center stage in 2023 by negotiating landmark agreements that address emerging workplace technologies. Alongside establishing fundamental rights regarding the adoption of new technologies, unions negotiated protective measures for workers, provisions ensuring workers share in the benefits of these advancements, and even reined in certain technological applications. Here’s a closer look at some of the major technology bargaining agreements reached this year.

Savannah Hunter, Sara Hinkley, Adriana Hernandez Castanedaand Enrique Lopezlira

Civil Service Vacancies in California: 2022–2023

We find that job vacancies in local government appear to be a widespread and significant problem for the public sector affecting a wide range of occupations across wage levels and educational requirements. We offer suggested policy solutions raised by subject matter experts and other reports and analyses on job vacancy challenges in local government.