The ink has barely dried on new rules to protect working people from predatory mortgage lenders and the big bankers’ friends in Congress are already making moves to try to roll back protections. Tomorrow, a House hearing is scheduled to consider proposals to roll back protections against predatory mortgages.
To protect consumers from the types of predatory lending that led to the housing crisis, the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 included the commonsense requirement that mortgage lenders consider a borrower’s ability to repay when issuing a mortgage.
In a 7-2 ruling and a major victory for voting rights advocates, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday struck down an Arizona law that required people attempting to register to vote in the state to provide proof of citizenship. The court ruled the additional requirement, not required under federal law, was an overreach by the state. States cannot add extra voter requirements that go beyond federal law. The 1993 "motor voter" law was passed in order to simplify voter registration and only requires that potential voters state that they are citizens, under penalty of perjury, but doesn't require additional proof of citizenship. The majority opinion was written by Antonin Scalia, who said that federal law "forbids states to demand that an applicant submit additional information beyond that required by the federal form." The dissenting votes were from Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the unemployment rate increased slightly from 7.5% to 7.6% in May. Each month, comments on this number include a discussion on “labor force participation"—the number that is released is based on people who are “in the labor force.” To be included in the labor force, someone has to either be employed, or actively looking for work.
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka released the following statement this morning on creating a commonsense immigration process:
Working people, including the 12 million members of the AFL-CIO, would like to remind our elected leaders why there is no higher legislative priority than immigration reform, which must include a certain and inclusive path to citizenship and respect the rights of America’s workers.
Workers this week are marking the second anniversary of the historic passage of a global standard covering the rights of domestic workers. The International Labor Organization's (ILO's) Decent Work for Domestic Workers Convention (No. 189) covers written employment contracts, protection from harassment, abuse and violence, hours of work, job safety and other workplace safeguards.
This old reporter remembers when “social media” meant a bunch of newshounds bending elbows in a bar after work.
Bo Johnson defines it differently. Social media, specifically text messaging, "is the single best way for us to get the word out to our members," says the vice president of the Paducah-based Western Kentucky AFL-CIO Area Council.
Workers in states all over the United States are joining a movement for earned paid sick leave and seeing major victories. It's common sense and smart business. Now, business owners are getting on board.
Nearly 300 small businesses have joined a campaign to support laws that require employers to give their workers paid sick days. The businesses have endorsed the Businesses for Earned Leave campaign, a partnership of American Sustainable Business Council, the Main Street Alliance and Social Venture Network. On Tuesday, the coalition launched a website supporting the campaign, Better Workplaces, Better Businesses.