SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - California lawmakers have advanced a “wage theft” bill in an effort to crack down on employers that shortchange workers.
The state Senate on Monday approved the proposal on a 24-12 vote. SB588 by Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon would make it easier for the state labor commissioner to collect unpaid wages on behalf of workers.
The proposal by the Los Angeles Democrat allows the labor commissioner to file a lien on an employer’s property.
Advocates say the problem disproportionately affects low-wage workers, immigrants and women because some employers pay less than the minimum wage or skirt overtime pay.
An analysis by the National Employment Law Center and UCLA Labor Center found eight in 10 workers with unpaid wage claims were never paid.
The bill heads to the Assembly.
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