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Fighting for the collective bargaining rights of union workers and the middle class is one of my top priorities. I firmly support the right of labor unions and public and private employees to collectively bargain. Ohio is significantly impacted by union membership, as it is home to over 600,000 union members. 

Unfortunately, union membership has been on the decline since 1983, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. While unionized workers averaged roughly $191 more in median weekly earnings than nonunionized workers in 2018, unionized workers made up only 33.9% of public-sector workers and only 6.4% of private-sector workers.

Fair Wages

In the 116th Congress I have continued to fight for fair wages for workers. I cosponsored the Restoring Overtime Pay Act (H.R. 3197). The bill strengthens overtime protections and increases the overtime salary level from $23,660 per year to nearly $51,000 per year, making roughly 4.6 million workers newly eligible for overtime pay. The bill will reestablish the salary level set in 2016, guaranteeing more salaried workers get additional overtime pay.

I supported the Paycheck Fairness Act (H.R.7). This bill amends sections of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to enhance enforcement of equal pay requirements and collect pay information by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.  It provides workers crucial tools toward achieving wage equality. Because everyone deserves equal pay for equal work.

I also had the pleasure of voting YES on the Raise the Wage Act, which passed the House in the 116th Congress. This bill will increase the national minimum wage to $15/hr by 2025. It will lift 1.3 million people out of poverty including 600,000 children.   

Federal Workers

I support a measure to give federal workers the pay increase they deserve after enduring a three-year wage freeze, four years without locality pay, furloughs, and a government shutdown.  In 2014, the 1% wage adjustment failed to keep up with the nation's rate of inflation. I also support the Wage Grade Employee Parity Bill, which ensures that wage-grade employees receive the same wage increase as salaried federal employees.

Workplace Protections and Wage Equality 

I am a strong supporter of workforce protection measures, including the ability for employees to earn paid sick leave as well as family and medical leave insurance.  I cosponsored the Robert C. Byrd Mine Safety Act to improve compliance with mine safety and health laws so that all workers are protected.  I also joined a letter to Secretary Perez and OMB Director Donovan supporting President Obama's executive order on Fair Pay and Save Workplaces to federal contractors are fully evaluated for compliance with employment and workplace safety laws. I am also focused on closing the wage gap that has been an ongoing struggle for working women. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the female-to-male earnings ratio has not changed significantly since 2007.  Women in Ohio who work full time earn 83 percent of that earned by men working full time.  This wage discrimination hinders our economy as women increasingly become the breadwinners in their families. In the 116th Congress, the House passed the Paycheck Fairness Act to close the loopholes in the Equal Pay Act of 1963. This bill will put us one step closer to guranteeing equal pay for equal work.