America Needs Responsible Job Growth
THE CHALLENGE WE FACE
Communities across the United States are losing good jobs.
Many are being lost, not overseas, but to companies turning them into bad jobs right here at home. Driven by the quest to maximize profits, companies have waged a structural assault on good jobs in a range of industries, particularly degrading the decent blue-collar jobs that once forged America’s middle class. In manufacturing, warehousing, hospitality, waste management, food processing, and other industries, hiring a layer of “temps” – or so-called “contract” workers – has become all-too-routine.
Corporate employers use temp agency hiring to depress wages, strip away benefits and workers’ rights, evade compliance with employment laws and regulations, and divide the workforce. This strategy of replacing direct-hire jobs with temp agency jobs has degraded working conditions and eroded workers' power across industries. Decades of lobbying by the temporary staffing industry, on the state and federal level, created advantages for temp hiring over direct hiring, and succeeded in passing the costs onto individuals, communities, and taxpayers.
Flexibility must come with fairness.
When production necessitates that some workers are hired through for-profit commercial temp agencies, they must enjoy the full protection of law, and parity treatment with other employees doing the same work. Corporations must not be able to use temp agencies to escape from legal and social accountability toward their workers, and to take advantage of the steep reduction in labor costs that this arrangement now enables, debilitating to poor workers. The rights of “temp” workers must be recognized and fully protected by their workplace employers.
The goal of Temp Worker Justice (TWJ) is to reverse the trend of temping-out America’s workplaces, to help empower temp workers and their organizations so they may obtain the full pay and benefits, safe working conditions, and complete respect that “temp” workers deserve and are entitled to.
WHAT WE DO
TWJ empowers workers and workers' organizations.
Temp Worker Justice is the only national organization dedicated to addressing the issues facing temporary workers. TWJ provides research, education, on-the-ground organizing, and legal support. We build the capacity for action through partner organizations and workplace leaders, replicating the successes our team and allies have achieved.
WHAT'S WRONG WITH TEMP WORK?
George Gonos, TWJ Executive Board Member