National Consumers League

President Obama continues year of action with executive order protecting workers

July 31, 2014

Contact: Ben Klein, National Consumers League, benk@nclnet.org, (202) 835-3323

President Obama continues his Year of Action today signing the Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces executive order. This order will require that prospective federal contractors with contracts over $1 million disclose past labor law violations and will create a framework for how federal agencies should consider such violations. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that there are roughly 24,000 businesses with federal contracts, employing about 28 million workers. Most significantly, the order bans federal contractors from forcing employees to give up their ability to seek justice in court through mandatory arbitration clauses workers are forced to sign as a condition of employment. The executive order also requires contractors to provide employees with a stub containing detailed info about their pay, taxes, withholdings, and other payment information. 

The following statement can be attributed to Sally Greenberg, executive director of the National Consumers League:

“Time and again, President Obama has demonstrated that if Congress is unable or unwilling to act to protect American workers, he will. Today marks another important step for increasing workplace protections. In order to know if they’re being paid properly, employees need to have access to the hours worked, including overtime hours, taxes, fees, and any paycheck deductions. This order will end the practice of employees being forced to sign mandatory arbitration agreements with employers. We commend the President and DOL for compelling contractors to treat workers fairly as a condition of getting access to federal contracts and being paid with taxpayer dollars under these contracts." 

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About the National Consumers League 
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization. Its mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.