Labor chiefs support employee misclassification legislation

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Labor chiefs support employee misclassification legislation

Risk & Insurance – State officials from New York and Iowa recently testified at a Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions hearing regarding the Employee Misclassification Prevention Act. The legislation, introduced in April by Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Rep. Lynn Wolsey, D-Calif., would protect workers from being misclassified as independent contractors and ensure access to fair labor standards, health and safety protections, and unemployment and workers' compensation benefits.

New York State Labor Commissioner Colleen C. Gardner urged lawmakers to pass the bill to address an issue that "hurts workers, deprives the government of tax revenue, and undercuts legitimate employers who classify their workers correctly." Gardner highlighted the success of the New York Joint Enforcement Task Force on Employee Misclassification, which was created in 2007. Since its inception, the task force has identified nearly 35,000 instances of employee misclassification and triggered 67 enforcement actions in a dozen cities throughout the state.

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