A collection of newsworthy information as reported from newspapers, magazines, and blogs.

Monday, December 26, 2011

President Obama Fights For "Fairness"

A 1975 labor rule defined home care aides as “companions,” a class of workers that does not qualify for federal minimum wage and overtime protections. Ms. Coke’s lawyer, Craig Becker, argued before the Supreme Court in 2007 that the rule was supposed to apply only to occasional domestic workers, like baby sitters, not home care aides.  The justices ruled 9 to 0 that only Congress or the Labor Department could change the rule, not the court.
The Obama administration proposed regulations to give the nation’s nearly two million home care workers minimum wage and overtime protections.  The administration’s move calls for home care aides to be protected under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the nation’s main wage and hour law.   The White House said 92 percent of these workers were women, nearly 30 percent were African-American and 12 percent Hispanic. Nearly 40 percent rely on public benefits like Medicaid and food stamps.  While industry experts say an overwhelming majority are paid at least the minimum wage, many do not receive a time-and-a-half premium when they work more than 40 hours a week. Twenty-two states do not include home health care workers under their wage and hour laws.
Republican lawmakers and business groups criticized the proposed rules.
President Obama nominated Mr. Craig Becker to the National Labor Relations Board in 2010.  Senate Republicans blocked his confirmation vote, so President Obama installed him on the board through a recess appointment.
McConnell charged Obama of engaging in “unhelpful political opportunism.”  Imagine that.  The fact still remains that McConnell’s filibuster tactic and desire to make President Obama a one term president is the primary reason our nation’s economy has not turned around.
Compromise is the only way forward.  Constituents all over America are angry and don’t understand why Congress cannot sit down, hammer out our differences and have a solution that we all can support. Good honest people deserve a Congress that will put partisan politics aside in favor of the greater good.  More often than not, an ‘all or nothing’ attitude produces nothing.  An ‘all or nothing’ attitude is not what we need right now.  I don’t care who wrote the plan or the compromise.  The American people need a Congress that is willing to put all options on the table.


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