Weekly Update: It’s Time for a Fair Work Week

Fighting for a Fair Work Week

It’s time to make our time count.

Oregon’s Senate is expected to consider SB 828 on fair scheduling. A new report released last week from the Labor Education Research Center of the University of Oregon and Portland State University, “The Impact on Oregonians of the Rise of Irregular Scheduling,” details the experiences of Oregonians on prevalence of irregular scheduling practices on their job. Key findings include:

  • 1 in 6 Oregon workers had less than 24 hours notice of their shifts.
  • 44% of survey respondents have worked back to back shifts, such as closing one day and opening the next day.
  • 73% are expected to have open availability to work to obtain more hours or a better schedule.
  • 73% percent of survey respondents were notified of their work schedule fourteen or fewer days in advance.
  • Nearly three-quarters of respondents’ work schedules were subject to change after they were posted.

“We have many thousands of low-wage workers in this state who are trying to juggle work and family, work and school, and multiple part-time jobs, who simply cannot make it all work,” said State Senator Michael Dembrow, who pre-filed legislation last year on fair scheduling. “Too many employees don't get their work schedules until a few days in advance and sometimes only the same day. Many employers do the right thing by their employees and give them plenty of notice, but many don’t. It’s these employers and this problem that are the focus of this bill.”

“I can't plan my life without enough notice" said Melissa Palavecino. "Rent and food costs are the same each month. Without regular scheduling practices, I don't know how much I'll make each week. A regular schedule will help me better balance my job and spending time with my family."

Over the past three years, twenty-three state and city jurisdictions have taken up the issue of fair scheduling in some form, a sign of the growing recognition in the public realm of the economic and social importance of these issues.

Click here to read news coverage about fair scheduling, and visit www.fairworkweekoregon.org for the latest information and to learn more.

President Trump's Address

The vast majority of Americans voted in November to rewrite our broken economic rules. Working people want the rules of the economy to benefit us, not the rich, not the wealthy, not Wall Street.  President Trump was able to win the White House in large part by railing against a failed status quo—promising to rein in Wall Street and restore jobs and opportunity for America’s workers. But his first month in office has been a mixed bag at best and a disappointment at worst.

Some of his finest moments last night came when he followed up on promises in the campaign that will help working people. At the same time, however, it lacked the details necessary to turn to action, and he embraced some policies that will hurt working people and the economy.   Most notably, the president shifted to a more positive tone and vision, which we hope signals he is ready to start doing business rather than just playing for the camera.

As a candidate, Trump could make the kind of broad promises he echoed last night. But he is beginning to realize that as president he has to start taking steps to make them a reality.

Take Action


We need to remind lawmakers that the Oregon Supreme Court has spoken: a deal is a deal. They cannot cut the benefits we have earned. We also need to remind them about the staffing shortfalls that will come if these cuts are passed and we can no longer offer teachers, firefighters, nurses and other public employees a secure retirement.  Click here to speak up for PERS.

Stable Homes

Rents are rising much faster than wages for too many Oregonians, and working people are losing their homes through no fault of their own due to the practice of "no-cause evictions." This has fueled a rapid rise in homelessness, housing instability, and the crushing of dreams for many families. Communities across the state are being impacted, and it will take all of our voices speaking up to bring the change we need to provide stable homes for working Oregonians. Click here to speak up for stable homes.

Labor Electives

The Oregon Labor Candidate School, which has earned national recognition for training union members to run for elected office, is launching a new series of workshops on civic engagement.

The next workshop in the series will be on March 21st, and focuses on public speaking. Get all the details at OregonLaborCandidateSchool.org

Upcoming Town Halls

Don’t miss these upcoming opportunities to ask questions and learn more about our elect leaders’ work in Washington DC:

Senator Jeff Merkley

Hood River County Town Hall Meeting
Saturday, March 4, 2017
Hood River Middle School Auditorium - 1602 May St., Hood River, OR 97031

Wasco County Town Hall Meeting
Saturday, March 4, 2017
The Dalles High School Auditorium - 220 E. 10th St., The Dalles, OR 97058

Sherman County Town Hall Meeting
Saturday, March 4, 2017
Bob’s Texas T-Bone and Frosty’s Event Room -101 First St., Rufus, OR 97050

Gilliam County Town Hall Meeting
Saturday, March 4, 2017
North Gilliam County Rural Fire Protection District Fire Hall - 1500 Railroad Ave., Arlington, OR 97812

Congressman Kurt Schrader

Woodburn Town Hall Meeting
Saturday, March 4th, 2017
Valor Middle School Gym - 450 Parr Rd NE, Woodburn, OR 97071

Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici

McMinnville Town Hall Meeting
Friday, March 3, 2017
McMinnville High School, Auditorium – 615 NE 15th Street, McMinnville, OR 97128

Hillsboro Town Hall Meeting
Monday, March 13, 2017
Washington County Fair Complex, Main Exhibit Hall North – 873 NE 34th Avenue, Hillsboro, OR 97124

Warrenton Town Hall Meeting
Saturday, April 15, 2017
Warrenton High School, Gym – 1700 S Main Avenue, Warrenton, OR 97146

Scappoose Town Hall Meeting
Saturday, April 15, 2017
Scappoose High School, Gym – 33700 SE High School Way, Scappoose, OR 97056

Sherwood Town Hall Meeting
Monday, April 17, 2017
Sherwood High School, Gym – 16956 SW Meinecke Road, Sherwood, OR 97140

Portland Town Hall Meeting
Sunday, May 7, 2017
Lincoln High School, Gym – 1600 SW Salmon Street, Portland, OR 97205
Please note: Parking may fill quickly. Please consider carpooling or public transportation.