Support collective bargaining, equal pay

The Assembly Labor Committee advanced two bills yesterday that advance the rights of working people in New Jersey.  The first, the Workplace Democracy Enhancement Act, S-2137 (Sweeney)/A-3686 (Coughlin) is a bill designed to keep unions strong by ensuring that employee organizations that are the exclusive representatives of public employees are able to carry out their statutory duties. It provides the right for unions to have access to and be able to communicate with the employees they represent. It also protects public employees by specifying that certain personal information, including home addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and birth dates, are not government records and are exempt from disclosure requirements. The bill passed the committee 6-3, with all Democrats supporting it and all Republicans opposed.

The Equal Pay bill, S-104 (Weinberg, Sweeney, Cunningham)/ A-1 (Lampitt/Downey) would amend the current Law Against Discrimination (LAD) to make it unlawful for an employer to discriminate between employees on the basis of sex by paying a rate of compensation, including benefits, to employees of one sex less than the rate paid to employees of another sex. The bill also prohibits employers from taking reprisals against an employee for disclosing information about job titles and salaries. The bill passed the committee unanimously on a 9-0 vote.

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