Workers' Rights Task Force

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The next meeting of the Workers' Rights Task Force will be held:

Date: Monday, December 17, 2018
Time: 11:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. ET
Place: Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky
1640 Lyndon Farm Court, #100
Louisville, Kentucky 40223

To sign up for this event, please email Miranda Brown at mirandabrown@kyequaljustice.org.



Agenda

11:00 Welcome and Introductions

11:15 Threats to Workers Safety and How to Push Back

  • Protecting Worker Safety: Debbie Berkowitz, National Employment Law Project, will present on the nation-wide threats to workers’ compensation and where Kentucky fits in this national context.

  • Responding to Black Lung Benefit Cuts in Kentucky: Representative Angie Hatton, sponsor of BR 163, and Evan Smith, Appalachian Citizens’ Law Center

  • Professional Perspectives on the Investigative Reporting into KY Office of Safety and Health: Larry Roberts, former Secretary of the Labor Cabinet

12:15 Lunch

12:30 Kentucky Supreme Court Review

  • McKenzie Cantrell, Kentucky Equal Justice Center, will lead updates and discussion on recent decisions on Right to Work and Arbitration.

12:45 Heads Up: Issues for 2019

  • Unemployment Insurance: Michele Evermore, National Employment Law Project, and Rich Seckel, Kentucky Equal Justice Center

  • State of Working Kentucky 2018 Report: Dustin Pugel, Kentucky Center for Economic Policy

  • Attack on Working People Through Public Benefits Programs: Jason Dunn, Kentucky Voices for Health

  • Pregnant Workers' Rights Act: Elizabeth Gedmark, A Better Balance

1:45 Around the Room: The 2019 General Assembly

  • We will use this session as a round robin to discuss what may be ahead during the 2019 GeneralAssembly. Everyone is welcome to participate in this discussion.

2:15 Announcements

  • 2019 Task Force Meeting Dates

2:30 Adjourn





Past Meetings


August 10, 2018


Agenda

10:00 KY Supreme Court Watch
Live Stream Watch Party of Oral Arguments in Fred Zuckerman and William Londrigan et al. v. Commonwealth of Kentucky, et al. regarding Right to Work legislation

11:00 Break

11:15 Welcome, Introductions, and Debrief of Kentucky Supreme Court Watch

11:30 Teachers Fight for Pensions

12:00 Lunch is Served!
We will continue our discussion as part of our working lunch.

12:30 Working for No Pay: 1115 Medicaid Waiver
  • Anne Marie Regan, Kentucky Equal Justice Center, discusses Medicaid work requirements and the campaign to stop them.

12:45 Agency Watch: What’s new in the state and federal labor agencies?
  • Jerald Adkins

1:00 The Gig Economy: Trends, Challenges and Legislation
  • Joining us by video, Becki Smith, Director of Work Structures at the National Employment Law Program, presents on how the gig economy is expanding, how measures to enable it are being rolled out across the States and how advocates can push back.
  • Anna Baumann, Kentucky Center for Economic Policy, discusses on Kentucky-specific legislation.

1:45 Announcements

2:00 Adjourn

December 5, 2017


Agenda11:00 Welcome and Introductions11:15 The Watering Down of Workers’ Compensation and How to Fight It
  • Debbie Berkowitz, National Employment Law Program, will present on the concerted campaign across the states to water down workers’ compensation.
  • Kentucky State AFL-CIO head Bill Londrigan and attorney Ched Jennings will focus on Kentucky law, Kentucky proposals, good and bad, and how to protect and improve workers’ compensation here. One troubling bill that didn't pass in the 2017 General Assembly: HB 296.
Materials: see Debbie's fact sheet on Kentucky. She'll also go through a PowerPoint on the fundamentals.
12:00 Lunch is Served!We will continue our discussion as part of our working lunch.
12:15 Wage and Hour Like it’s 1929A Walk-Through of SB 237: SB 237 would change the definitions of employer and employee, change what an employer is allowed to withhold from an employee’s paycheck, change rules about taking breaks, and leave room for sex-based wage discrimination. It didn't pass, but it could come back. We’ll hear an in-depth analysis of the worst of it.
  • Jerald Adkins of Kircher Suetholz & Associates
  • Matt Lynch of Priddy, Cutler, Naake & Meade
Labor Cabinet regulation loosening wage and hour rules for teens 16-17: This administrative regulation is part of the Cabinet’s effort under Governor Bevin’s Red Tape Reduction. It says that teens can work more hours in a week. See 803 KAR 1:100. Child Labor.
12:45 Big Case Round-Up
  • Right To Work: Matt Lynch and Bill Londrigan
  • Minimum Wage: Both the Kentucky Supreme Court and the General Assembly have barred local governments from raising the wage. Are there still good things they can do?
  • McCann and class actions: We had some good news from the Kentucky Supreme Court. The McCann v. Sullivan University decision was released August 24. Class and collective actions for workers are here to stay (at least until the next General Assembly).
1:15 Pension Reform Crisis
  • Richard Becker, Service Employees International Union
Materials: See the Kentuckians for the Commonwealth PowerPoint on pensions.
1:30 Preparing for the General AssemblyWe will use this session as a round robin to discuss what may be ahead during the 2018 General Assembly. Everyone is welcome to participate in this discussion. To kick us off, we’ll hear from:
  • George Eklund on key provisions of SB 120 and the Pregnant Workers Act (see companion bills HB 260 and SB 172.
If time permits, we may also discuss federal updates.
2:15 Meeting Announcements and UpdatesWe’ll get updates on advocacy campaigns, events/meetings/conferences, and more from our partner organizations.
2:30 Adjourn

May 16, 2017

Agenda

11:00 Welcome and Introductions

11:15 Meeting Announcements and Updates

We’ll get updates on advocacy campaigns, events/meetings/conferences, and more from our partner organizations.

11:30 Legislative Update

Was this really the “short session”? The 2017 General Assembly was unlike any other 30 day session with bills passing left and right (well, really just right). We will use this session to de-brief on navigating the “new majority,” what passed and what did not, and what may be ahead.

Everyone is welcome to participate in this discussion. To kick us off, we’ll hear from:

  • Bill Londrigan on Right to Work, prevailing wage, workers comp
  • Kate Miller on SB 120 and Pregnant Workers Act
  • Jerald Adkins on wage and hour including SB 237 and local minimum wage
  • Steve Sanders on mine safety and black lung

If time permits, we may also discuss federal updates.

12:15 Lunch is Served!

We will continue our discussion as part of our working lunch.

12:30 From Capitol Avenue to Circuit Court

Some legislation that passed during the legislative session is already being challenged in the courts. In this new era of Kentucky politics, are the courts becoming a better advocacy tool? We will discuss and brainstorm constitutional and other challenges that can be made to anti-worker legislation that has recently passed or may reappear soon.


1:15 Tax and Pension Reform: The Next Worker Battle

  • Sarah Zeller, Kentucky Center for Economic Policy
  • Tyler Offerman, Kentuckians for the Commonwealth

Rumors are spreading rapidly about a special legislative session on tax and pension reform this year. Although little is known about the Governor’s tax plan, there may not be much time to formulate an advocacy strategy once the plan becomes public. We will use this time to have a general discussion about tax reform options and how those could affect low to middle income workers.


1:50 Going Forward: We will discuss dates, times and topics for our next meeting.

2:00 Adjourn