It has been a very busy week in the Oregon legislature, with many priorities moving forward in the process. It’s encouraging to see so many unions from across Oregon engaging with legislators and fighting to make Oregon a better place for working people.
We need your help this week: The 2021 Oregon Labor Lobby Day is less than two weeks away on Thursday, April 8. With so many critical priorities still working their way through various committees in Salem, this is the time in which we need as many union members as possible to advocate for our shared priorities.
Please encourage your staff and members to join us on April 8. You can learn more about the event and sign up at www.oraflcio.org/lobbyday
Update on Oregon Labor Priorities
HB 2474: Expanding OFLA (Oregon Family Leave Act)HB 2474 modernizes Oregon’s unpaid job protected family and medical leave program and had a public hearing in the House Committee on Early Childhood on Monday, March 22 and will have a work session on Wednesday, March 31 at 1:00pm.
SB 670: Saving ATU Local 757 TriMet Apprenticeship ProgramsThis bill is a critical priority for ATU Local 757 and had a public hearing in the Senate Committee on Labor and Business on Thursday, March 25. If passed SB 670 will protect the ATU Local 757 Apprenticeship Program at TriMet. SB 670 will have a public hearing and possible work session on Tuesday, March 30 at 8:00am.
SB 588: Oregon Hiring Hall Paid Sick Leave Passes Senate! This important bill is a top priority for LiUNA and moved out of the Senate on Wednesday, March 24. SB 588 will eliminate the current exemption in Oregon paid sick time law for hiring hall workers covered by a CBA will allow administering sick time through multi-employer benefits plans or trusts. The bill passed with near-unanimous support and now moves on to the House.
Advocacy for Strong Labor Standards in Oregon’s Clean Energy Future: HB 2021
HB 2021 received its first public hearing on Monday, March 22. The goal of this legislation is to move Oregon’s economy to renewable and clean energy. However, we know that clean energy economy policies must also create and promote family-supporting jobs and protect workers in impacted industries. That’s why we will continue to advocate to make sure this policy includes the strongest labor protections, including apprenticeship, prevailing wage and health and retirement requirements, in addition to project labor agreements. Click here to read our testimony on this legislation.
Upcoming Hearings & Floor Votes
SB 483: Retaliation Presumption for Safety and Health This top priority for the Oregon AFL-CIO will have a work session on Tuesday, March 30 at 8:00am. Under SB 483, if an employer fired a worker or took another adverse employment action within 60 days of the worker raising a safety or health concern, the responsibility would be on the employer to prove that they instead fired them for any other reason and that it was not retaliatory in nature.
SB 493: Prevailing Wage This top priority for the Oregon State Building and Construction Trades Council is scheduled for a floor vote in the Senate on Wednesday, March 31. If passed, SB 493 would create a more predictable, stronger standard, with workers taking home higher wages, be less likely to be in poverty, and more likely to be covered by private health insurance, and make even stronger contributions to the state’s economy. To learn more about this important legislation, please listen to our latest podcast episode which covers SB 493 and Oregon’s prevailing wage law
HB 2915: Portland Heart & Lung Presumption for Workers CompensationHB 2915 is a priority of IAFF Local 43 and the Oregon State Fire Fighters Council has been scheduled to be on the House floor but was carried over to Monday, March 29 where it is expected to be voted upon.
HB 3016: Nurse Safe StaffingThis top priority of the Oregon Nurses Association updates the Nurse Staffing law to ensure that the same collaborative, facility-based approach to nurse staffing is also used to quickly develop a staffing contingency plan under a State of Emergency Executive Order. HB 3016 is scheduled to be on the House floor for a vote on Monday, March 29.
If your union has legislative needs or wants to get more involved in Oregon Labor’s efforts in Salem, contact Oregon AFL-CIO Political Director Jess Giannettino Villatoro at firstname.lastname@example.org Oregon AFL-CIO Lead Political and Policy Strategist Catie Theisen at email@example.com. As always, thank you for all you do to build power for Oregon’s workers!
President, Oregon AFL-CIO