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March 1, 2021

MSCI Members Can Make Voice Heard On The PRO Act

U.S. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) has announced that Democratic leadership will bring up H.R. 842, the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act, for a vote on the House floor during the week of March 8.

As Connecting the Dots reported previously, this bill would infringe on the rights of workers, threaten essential businesses, and create adversarial relationships between employers and employees. Included in the bill, for example, are provisions to codify the Obama-era joint-employer standard into law, force union representation without an election, and change requirements for independent contractor status. (The National Association of Manufacturers has a fact sheet explaining the bill here.)

The Metals Service Center Institute is working with the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace to craft a letter to federal lawmakers opposing the bill, but individual member company employees can make their voices heard on this matter by using NAM’s website to take action now by sending a letter to their representatives in Congress. Interested individuals also can click here to use a tool from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to tell Congress to oppose the PRO Act.

In related news: Bloomberg Law reports the U.S. Department of Labor is developing a new joint employer regulation that will “undo the Trump administration’s business-friendly approach to the hot-button issue of shared liability among multiple companies.” The agency’s Wage and Hour Division reportedly already has sent a proposed rule to the White House regulatory office for review. Bloomberg said that, “Although the substance of the new regulation remains unclear, DOL’s move shows the agency wants to re-open the rulemaking process, potentially leading to a rescission of the Trump-era standard.” Bloomberg also predicted, “The new regulation may also tee up a return to the Obama DOL’s view that corporations are often accountable for the labor standards at their franchisees, subcontractors, staffing firms, and other affiliated companies.”

As Connecting the Dots reported two years ago, the Trump administration rule had narrowed the circumstances in which businesses can be deemed joint employers, but that regulation has been subject to litigation in the federal courts. The Biden administration’s proposed rule is now awaiting sign-off from the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs before it can be released.