This brief examines pension benefits for public servants in Sonoma County in terms of their role in employee compensation, the evolving financial status of pension systems, the impact of pension reform on costs, and how different pension systems in the county and surrounding Bay Area region stack up against each other in terms of protection from inflation during retirement.
California Workers' Rights: A Manual of Job Rights, Protections and Remedies
This research brief finds that public employee pensions in Sonoma County help to balance the gap with private sector salaries and are financially sound, though they have a way to go in protecting many retirees from inflation.
This blog post outlines the assistance offered by the recently-established Child Care Providers United California Workers Health Care Fund, summarizes recent findings from a David Binder Research/ California Health Care Foundation survey that underscore the need for this new health care investment for family child care providers, and discusses how the program will improve affordability for providers and benefit California as a whole.
This report explores how governments use technology, what drives technology adoption, and how technologies affect public sector workers and the delivery of public services. Using examples across local, state, and federal governments, the report finds that transparency and accountability have lagged behind rapid technology adoption in the wake of COVID-19, and that public sector workers play a critical role in ensuring that technology is used to strengthen the ability of governments to provide quality and equitable public services.
Drawing on dozens of examples of public sector technology use across local, state, and federal government agencies, this comprehensive report identifies how governments use technology, what drives technology adoption, and how these technologies impact public sector work and the nation’s twenty million public sector workers.
Berkeley Blog post. Employers are increasingly using digital technologies to hire, manage, and monitor workers, largely without any regulation. But on January 1, California took a first step towards worker data rights when new amendments to the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) went into effect and covered workers at large businesses.
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.
A 1987 report from the federal Office of Technology Assessment recognized the potential for employers to misuse and abuse new technologies resulting in adverse effects for workers, but recommended a “wait and see” approach due to lack of data to justify regulation. This blog post reviews decades of research since publication of the report that finds electronic performance monitoring (EPM) systems do increase worker stress and cause other harms.
Table showing California city and county minimum wage rates through December 2022.
Labor Center research was used in a years-long campaign by health and immigrant advocates to bring health coverage to undocumented Californians.
We provide an overview of existing research that attempts to measure the prevalence of employers’ use of workplace management technologies – i.e., technologies that are used to monitor, evaluate, or make predictions about workers, or assist or augment their tasks.
The UC Berkeley Labor Center has released a report on how and why employers in key industries are deploying new technologies, and what effects these changes could have on workers. The report, “Technological change in five industries: Threats to jobs, wages, and working conditions,” synthesizes the findings from studies released by the Labor Center and Working Partnerships USA from 2018 to 2022. The report concludes that technology’s effects on job quality – like wages and working conditions – should be just as big of a concern as its effects on the total number of jobs available.
Understanding how technological changes may unfold in different industries is essential for developing effective solutions to the challenges that workers face. In this report, we synthesize the findings of five industry studies: trucking, warehouses, health care, retail, and food delivery.
Fact Sheet: Fixing the Family Glitch in California — Projections from the California Simulation of Insurance Markets
Proposed federal regulations would fix the family glitch by extending subsidies to spouses and children offered unaffordable family coverage through an employer. The employee would still be excluded from subsidies if their cost for single coverage through their employer was affordable. We use the California Simulations of Insurance Markets (CalSIM) model to project for 2023 how many people would fall into the family glitch in California, how many would be newly eligible for a positive dollar subsidy, and how many would enroll in Covered California with subsidies under the family glitch fix.
FAST Recovery Act will raise labor standards and open new opportunities for fast-food worker organizing in California
The California Legislature has passed AB257 and it now heads to the Governor’s desk. The FAST Recovery Act provides a way for the state’s fast-food workers to have a voice in the development and implementation of labor standards in their industry.
After decades of inaction and failed attempts, the U.S. has finally passed federal legislation addressing climate change. The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) is groundbreaking not only in its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but also in how it demonstrates that we don’t have to choose between good jobs and action on the climate. By including strong labor standards in incentives for clean energy and energy efficiency work, the IRA will help build a high-road green economy, creating good jobs and clear pathways into them.
The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) currently being considered by Congress would improve health care affordability for many Californians by addressing high and rising drug prices and by extending the improved premium affordability assistance to Covered California enrollees that began in 2021. The extension of federal premium assistance would also unlock additional state-financed affordability help to reduce how much Covered California enrollees pay out-of-pocket when they access care.
$18 Minimum Wage in California: Who would be affected by the proposal to raise California’s minimum wage?
The Living Wage Act is a proposed ballot measure to increase the California minimum wage to $18 an hour by 2025. This report examines which workers stand to benefit from the proposed increase.
RELEASE: $18 Minimum Wage in California: Who would be affected by the proposal to raise California’s minimum wage?
New research finds that an $18 minimum wage would give five million California workers a pay raise; the ballot initiative would help lift 3.5 million Californians out of poverty.