Low-Wage Contractor Backpay Bills Introduced

Members of Congress in both the House and the Senate announced their plans on Tuesday to introduce bills to secure back pay for low-wage Federal contract workers. Rep. Elanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., and Senator Tina Smith, D-Minn., released statements announcing their intentions to support legislation to ensure backpay for low-wage workers. A previous version of the bill, introduced by Norton during the 2018 shutdown, guaranteed government compensation for retail, food, custodial, and security contract employees. “Unlike Federal employees, who have always been made whole after a shutdown, many low-wage workers, who are the focus of our bill, earn little more than the minimum wage and receive few, if any, benefits,” said Norton.

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