FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 5, 2019
CONTACT: Taylor Campbell, 202-854-9571, [email protected]
NATIONWIDE — Today, Rep. Rosa DeLauro (CT-03) introduced the Schedules That Work Act, a critically important bill that will give employees a say in their work schedules and curb the last-minute scheduling practices wreaking havoc on the lives of working people, especially women and folks of color. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is also expected to release a similar version of the bill in the Senate in the coming weeks.
“At Big Lots, my work schedule wasn’t made available to me until the day before our workweek began. It made it so stressful and difficult to plan ahead for the week because I’m the sole provider for my children and my mom,” said Brandy Powell, United for Respect leader and mother who works retail in California. “I deserve a say in when I work, and I deserve advance notice when I’m expected to work. When I told Big Lots I wouldn’t be available because my kids had doctor’s visits, they ignored my shift requests and called me into work. I was forced to quit my job after 11 months because it was too much stress for me and my family.”
Fair work schedules are essential to help people who work hourly jobs support their families and meet their responsibilities at home and on the job. Earlier this month, Brandy Powell joined other United for Respect leaders for a roundtable with Rep. DeLauro hosted by National Women’s Law Center, the Center for Popular Democracy and Washington Center for Equitable Growth to discuss the release of new research from sociologists Danny Schneider and Kristen Harknett—recently profiled in the New York Times—which makes clear that “just-in-time” scheduling practices are both widespread and damaging to working people, their families, and their communities. Unstable and unpredictable work hours can increase economic hardship, undermine children’s well-being, and make it incredibly hard for families to access high-quality, affordable childcare. People of color—especially women—are more likely to experience these work schedules than their white counterparts, even within the same company.
The Schedules That Work Act will help restore a fair workweek for millions of workers, providing employees across industries with the right to request a schedule change without fear of retaliation, as well as a right to 11 hours of rest between scheduled shifts—or time-and-a-half pay if an employee consents to work with a shorter break. NWLC’s fact sheet has more information on the bill.
If you’re covering today’s bill introduction and would like to speak to Brandy Powell or another United for Respect leader working in retail, please reach out to Taylor Campbell at [email protected].