As a progressive of course I support raising the minimum wage, family medical leave and ensuring that employers follow our laws; but we need fresh ideas to do more to address the rising income disparity and ensure that workers share in the
value that they help create. My goal as Governor is to make Colorado first in the nation for companies that share their profits and success with their workers, just as I did with the companies I started.
Increase the number of state government apprenticeships
We're developing the next generation of farmers and ranchers through the Agricultural Workforce Development Program, to help young people, particularly in rural areas, get real world experience on a working farm or ranch through paid apprenticeships.
But we want to go even further, increasing the number of state government apprenticeships by 50% and supporting the creation of 100 new apprenticeship opportunities in the private sector - both by June 30 of this year.
Source: 2024 State of the State Address to the Colorado legislature
, Jan 11, 2024
Passed a law to ensure women are paid the same as men
It's simple: our efforts to support Colorado families fall short if we can't ensure Colorado women a secure place in our economy.
That's why it's so important that we passed a law to ensure women are paid the same as men.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Colorado legislature
, Feb 17, 2021
Signed equal pay law; supports minority/women owned business
In Colorado, we believe your future should not be pre-determined by the color of your skin, your parents' income, your religion, your age, your disability status, where you live, where you were born, who you love, your gender identity. We believe in a
Colorado For All. That's why I was proud to sign an equal pay bill guaranteeing that men and women get paid the same wage for the same work. That's why we are proud to support our minority-, women-, and veteran-owned businesses.
Source: 2020 Colorado State of the State address
, Jan 9, 2020
Expand collective bargaining, instead of "right-to-work"
Q: Enact "right to work" law, eliminating the right of unions to mandate dues for workers they represent?
Jared Polis (D):
No. "Protect & expand collective bargaining rights while actively opposing attacks on organized labor."
Walker Stapleton (R): Unknown.
Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Colorado Governor race
, Oct 9, 2018
Let municipalities raise local minimum wage
Q: Raise the minimum wage above $7.25/hour?
Jared Polis (D): Yes. Also let municipalities raise the minimum wage in their area.
Walker Stapleton (R): Unknown. But generally opposes regulation of business.
Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Colorado Governor race
, Oct 9, 2018
Form unions by card-check instead of secret ballot.
Polis signed H.R.1409&S.560
Amends the National Labor Relations Act to require the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to certify a bargaining representative without directing an election if a majority of the bargaining unit employees have authorized designation of the representative (card-check) and there is no other individual or labor organization currently certified or recognized as the exclusive representative of any of the employees in the unit.
Requires that priority be given to any charge that, while employees were seeking representation by a labor organization, an employer:
discharged or otherwise discriminated against an employee to encourage or discourage membership in the labor organization;
threatened to discharge or to otherwise discriminate against an employee in order to interfere with, restrain, or coerce employees in the exercise of guaranteed self-organization or collective bardaining rights; or
engaged in any unfair labor practice that significantly interferes with, restrains, or coerces employees in the exercise of such guaranteed rights.
Source: Employee Free Choice Act 09-HR1409 on Mar 10, 2009
Rated 0% by CEI, indicating a pro-worker rights voting record.
Polis scores 0% by CEI on union issues
The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), a public policy organization dedicated to the principles of free markets and limited government, has created a Congressional Labor Scorecard for the 112th Congress focusing on worker issues. The score is determined based on policies that support worker freedom and the elimination of Big Labor`s privileges across the country.
Votes in the current Congress score include:
Bill: H.R. 658, LaTourette Amendment No. 21: NO on repealing changes to the Railway Labor Act`s voting rules.
Bill: H.R. 658, Gingrey Amendment No. 18: YES to prohibit Federal Aviation Administration employees from using official--that is, taxpayer sponsored--time for union activities during the official workday.
Bill: H.R. 1, Price Amendment No. 410: YES to defund the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
Bill: H.R. 1, Guinta Amendment No. 166:
YES to prohibit imposing `prevailing wage` and other requirements in project labor agreements that advantage unionized contractors.
Bill: H.R. 2017, Scalise Amendment No. 388: YES to prohibit project labor agreements in DHS contracts
Bill: H.R. 2055, LaTourette Amendment No. 411: NO on funding for federal project labor agreements.
Bill: H.R. 1, King Amendment No. 273: YES to eliminate the `Davis Bacon` prevailing wage rate requirement for federal projects.
Bill: H.R. 2017, Gosar Amendment No. 386: YES to eliminate the `Davis Bacon` prevailing wage rate requirement for Department of Homeland Security contracts.
Bill: H.R. 2354: Gosar Amendment No. 655: YES to restrict application of the Davis-Bacon Act to contracts exceeding $20 million.
Bill: H.R. 2017: Rokita Amendment No. 2: YES to prohibit collective bargaining at the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).
Raise the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour by 2016.
Polis co-sponsored Minimum Wage Fairness Act
Congressional summary: Increases the federal minimum wage for employees to:
$8.20 an hour beginning 6 months after enactment
$9.15 an hour beginning 1 year later,
$10.10 an hour beginning 2 years later, and
an amount determined by increases in the Consumer Price Index, beginning annually after 3 years.
Increases the federal minimum wage for tipped employees to $3.00 an hour beginning 6 months after enactment, with annual CPI adjustments.
Proponent`s argument in favor (RaiseTheMinimumWage.com): The federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour remains decades out of date, and the federal minimum wage for tipped workers--$2.13 per hour--has not increased in over 20 years. The minimum wage of the past provided significantly more buying power than it does today. The minimum wage of $1.60 an hour in 1968 would be $10.56 today when adjusted for inflation.
Opponent`s argument against: (Neil King in Wall Street Journal,
Feb. 24, 2014): The CBO concluded that a jump in the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour could eliminate 500,000 jobs. For Republicans, the report provided ammunition that a higher minimum wage would kill jobs. Democrats pointed to the CBO`s findings that the higher wage would lift 900,000 people out of poverty. But both sides missed a key finding: That a smaller hike from the current $7.25 to $9.00 an hour would cause almost no pain, and still lift 300,000 people out of poverty while raising the incomes of 7.6 million people.Congressional Budget Office report:: Once fully implemented, the $10.10 option would reduce total employment by about 500,000 workers, or 0.3%. Some people earning slightly more than $10.10 would also have higher earnings, due to the heightened demand for goods and services. The increased earnings for low-wage workers would total $31 billion. Accounting for all increases and decreases, overall real income would rise by $2 billion.
Ban discriminatory compensation; allow 2 years to sue.
Polis signed Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act
Amends the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to declare that an unlawful employment practice occurs when:
a discriminatory compensation decision or other practice is adopted;
an individual becomes subject to the decision or practice; or
an individual is affected by application of the decision or practice, including each time wages, benefits, or other compensation is paid.
Allows an aggrieved person to obtain relief, including recovery of back pay, for up to two years preceding the filing of the charge, where the unlawful employment practices that have occurred during the charge filing period are similar or related to practices that occurred outside the time for filing a charge. Applies the preceding provisions to claims of compensation discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
[Note: A woman named Lilly Ledbetter filed a lawsuit for gender-based discriminatory compensation. The Supreme Court ruled that Ms. Ledbetter could only sue for damages going back 180 days, and the 180 days was calculated from the time her employment contract was initiated, i.e., her hire date. This new law changes the 180-day period to two years, and also calculates the date from the time of each paycheck, rather than the hire date. -- Ed.]
Stronger enforcement against gender-based pay discrimination.
Polis signed Paycheck Fairness Act
A bill to amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to provide more effective remedies to victims of discrimination in the payment of wages on the basis of sex.
Revises the exception to the prohibition for a wage rate differential based on any other factor other than sex. Limits such factors to bona fide factors, such as education, training, or experience.
Prohibits employer retaliation for inquiring about, discussing, or disclosing the wages of the employee in response to a sex discrimination investigation.
Makes employers who violate sex discrimination prohibitions liable in a civil action for either compensatory or punitive damages.
States that any action brought to enforce the prohibition against sex discrimination may be maintained as a class action in which individuals may be joined as party plaintiffs without their written consent.