Assembly Labor Committee Votes to Release Bill 6 to 2
The decision to go on strike is a matter of having no other choice. In order to protect workers who are forced out on strike, we ask that you send a message right now to your state Assembly members, asking them to support A-3819, which provides unemployment benefits to strikers and is anticipated to be voted on in the coming days.
Providing strikers unemployment compensation would have a number of benefits: it would ensure workers are not starved back to work by their employer, that they have the means to stand up for fair treatment, and can have a basic level of income after being off the job for a certain period of time.
Workers with UNITE HERE Local 54 were on strike for more than a month at the Taj Mahal after having no choice but to walk off the job. Ultimately, management announced its intent to close the property which will force approximately 3,000 people out of work.
The conditions of being on strike versus being laid off are the same in many ways. Both result in being out of work and without an income. Also, in the case of a strike, there is no guarantee how things will end. Therefore, just as laid off workers are eligible to receive unemployment benefits, there needs to be a standard in which strikers are eligible as well.
This legislation would allow workers, who engage in a strike or other concerted activities, to receive unemployment insurance benefits after 30 days or in the case that an employer hires replacement workers.
The New Jersey State AFL-CIO thanks the primary sponsors of this legislation, Assemblymen and women Quijano, DeAngelo, Giblin, Benson, Zwicker, Danielson, and Houghtaling as well as Senate President Sweeney and Senator Joseph Vitale. We further thank the members of the Assembly Labor Committee, who voted to release the bill. CLICK HERE for a breakdown of today’s vote.
Once again, please CLICK HERE to urge your Assembly members to vote in favor of A-3819. When workers’ rights are undermined, employees shouldn’t have to sacrifice their livelihoods just to stand up for the justice they deserve.