California’s Governor Jerry Brown has signed landmark legislation that will provide significant new protections for subcontracted employees. Under the new law, host employers and their staffing firms will have to jointly take responsibility for the health, safety, and basic workers’ rights of temporary employees.
This is a huge victory for California’s most vulnerable workers, including immigrant workers who make up a large segment of the subcontracted workforce. It’s a big win for the labor organizations, community groups, and Local COSH affiliates – including the California Federation of Labor, Worksafe the Southern California Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health (SoCalCOSH), and the National Staffing Workers Alliance – who championed the bill.
Other states and the federal government should follow up with similar laws and regulations. The ranks of temp workers are growing, and too often corporations and their temp firms avoid responsibility for fatalities and injuries by pointing the finger at each other. California is getting it right by offering equal protection to all workers.