Legal

Category archives for Legal

Fair working standards for construction workers and financial profit for developers aren’t incompatible, according to a new report from Texas’ Workers Defense Project. In fact, consumers are actually willing to pay more to live in places built on principles of safety, economic justice and dignity.

With immigration at the forefront of national debate, Jim Stimpson decided it was time to do a little more digging.

Houston lawmakers poised to tackle wage theft

Members of Houston’s City Council held a public hearing this week to discuss a proposed ordinance to beef up sanctions against companies who don’t pay employees their lawfully owed wages. Penalties will include a prohibition from getting city contracts, permits and licenses.

On July 15 and 16, about two dozen farmworkers paid an unprecedented visit to Capitol Hill to ask Congress, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the White House to support increased protection from exposure to pesticides. Farmworkers have lobbied Congress before, but this is the first time such a visit focused entirely on pesticide exposure…

by Anthony Robbins, MD, MPA The current issue of Mother Jones offers an article on the troubling and growing list of State “gag laws” which make it a crime to disclose contamination and abuse in animal breeding and slaughter houses.  Ted Genoways in “Gagged by Big Ag,” describes the events and players leading to: laws…

The Supreme Court’s decisions on marriage equality and the Voting Rights Act got a lot of media attention last week, but several of the Court’s other decisions also have implications for public health — and they came down on the side of employers, real-estate developers, and drug manufacturers.

Sharon Thomas-Ellison works hard for her paychecks at Jimmy John’s. On occasion when no one else is available, the 19-year-old has worked from 11 in the morning until 1 a.m. at night with just a 30-minute break — and it’s okay, she says, she needs the extra income.

It seems we barely go a week now without news of another violent gun incident. Last week’s shooting rampage in Santa Monica, Calif., has resulted in the deaths of five people. And since the Newtown school shooting last December — in the span of less than six months — thousands of Americans have been killed by guns.

Every week, the Austin-based Workers Defense Project welcomes standing room-only crowds to its Workers in Action meetings. And once a month, a local OSHA representative would join the meeting, giving some of Texas’ most vulnerable workers the chance to meet face-to-face with the agency. Unfortunately, due to the federal sequester, OSHA has had to indefinitely suspend its participation. It’s a significant loss.

When it comes to nonviolent drug offenses, systems that favor treatment over incarceration not only produce better health outcomes, they save money, too. It’s yet another example of how investing in public health and prevention yields valuable returns on investment.