2016 and onwards:
05/13/15 - Starting this month the people who take care of Facebook’s grounds, answer its phones and serve food to its workers will receive a $15-an-hour minimum wage, a minimum of 15 days paid leave and a $4,000 new child benefit, if they don't get paid parental leave. The measure would cover food-service, security and janitorial workers, among others, at its U.S. facilities. Facebook plans to expand the program to other contractors over the next year.
04/02/15 - McDonald's is raising the minimum wage and introducing paid time off for 90,000 employees in company-owned stores. The new wage hike of $1 above the local legal minimum wage will go into effect on July 1, 2015. By the end of 2016, the company predicts minimum wage at company-owned restaurants will be at least $10 an hour. Full- and part-time employees at company-owned restaurants, with at least one year of service, will begin to accrue personal paid time-off. For example, an employee who works an average of 20 hours per week will be eligible to accrue approximately 20 hours of paid time off per year. If these employees don’t take the time off they’ve earned, they will be paid for the value of that time.
Employers are required to provide new moms with time and a private place -- besides the bathroom -- to pump or breastfeed during work hours. Read more about Nursing Moms at Work.
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An increasing number of professionals are interested in opportunities outside the U.S. And it's not the typical globetrotter - young and unattached - looking for work overseas. So don't rule yourself out. Check here your Salary Overseas.
There are exceptions to employment at will. Do you know your right on this part? You can't be terminated on basis of your race or gender. And 38 states regulate dismissals by so called implied contracts. Find out more at dismissal rights.
07/23/15 - The “Fight for $15” effort for higher pay for fast-food workers in New York won a major victory on Wednesday. The increase to $15 an hour would be fully phased in by the end of 2018 for workers in New York City and by mid-2021 for those in the rest of the state. Currently, fast-food pay in New York is about $9 an hour.
07/01/15 - The U.S. Department of Labor released the long awaited proposed overtime rule. If implemented it would provide overtime pay to low paid managers by 2016, who currently don't qualify for them. At the moment, under the federal law, if an employee makes at least $23,660 per year - or $455 per week - their employer doesn't have to pay them overtime. The new policy would raise that bar to $50,440. Currently, only 8% of salaried workers can count on overtime protection. According to the Economic Policy Institute, the proposed threshold will ensure that at least 44% of all workers are automatically covered by the FLSA’s overtime protections.
06/22/15 - On June 12, 2015 Oregon became the fourth state in the country to provide paid or unpaid sick time to most employees, starting January 1, 2016, provided that Governor Kate Brown will sign the bill. Read more about Oregon's paid sick leave.
06/22/15 - Rhode Island's Gov. Raimondo signed Monday legislation into law that will raise Rhode Island’s minimum wage from $9 to $9.60 an hour beginning on Jan. 1. The new rate will match Connecticut and Vermont, where the rate will be $9.60 an hour in 2016. The Massachusetts rate will be $10 an hour. In 2017, however, Connecticut’s rate rises to $10.10 an hour, Vermont’s increases to $10 an hour, and Massachusetts moves to $11 an hour. The Rhode Island legislation does not address 2017.
06/08/15 - Hundreds of Kentucky's lowest paid government workers will soon see a big boost in their paychecks. Governor Steve Beshear signed an executive order Monday, raising the minimum wage for state executive branch workers from $7.25 to $10.10. Tipped employees, like servers at state parks, will see their base hourly pay more than double from $2.19 to $4.90.
06/01/15- California's Senate passed a bill that would raise California's $9 minimum wage to $11 an hour on Jan. 1 and boost it again to $13 in 2017. Beginning in 2019, the bill would require the minimum wage to be increased annually based on inflation. The measure heads next to the Assembly.
05/28/15 - Ascension Health will raise its companywide minimum wage to $11 per hour, starting with the first pay period July 5. The change will affect 10,000 workers, an estimated 7 percent of the 150,000 in the system’s workforce, according to Ascension, the nation’s largest Catholic and nonprofit health network. In April, Aetna raised its minimum wage to $16 per hour for an estimated 5,700 employees.
05/26/15 - Dog walkers could earn more than the highest $15 minimum wage rate per hour while working less. Depending on the state/city they live in, dog walkers charge from $9 to $25 per dog walk. Let's assume they would ask $14 and walk 192 dogs per month, which adds up to annual earnings of roughly $29.000. That is less than the £31,200 a worker would make annually with a $15 hourly minimum wage rate. However, according to research in the UK, taking other people’s pets for a stroll is not a full time job, as most dog walkers take several dogs out at a time and typically take about 13 dogs per day, which means the full month’s work of 192 dogs is completed within 15 days. Adding 5 days more work and 65 dogs to walk extra, the annual earnings of a dog walker would be about $36,000, $4,800 more than a full time annual minimum wage with an hourly rate of $15. Dog walkers in cities as L.A. or Boston charge up to $25 dollars per hour and could earn up to $60,000 a year, That is more than the salary of a full time nurse, bank employee or real estate agent. Check your salary to see if you earn more than a dog walker.
07/24/15 - Professional cheerleaders are now recognized as employees under California law. On July 15, 2015, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that requires all California-based professional sports teams to pay their cheerleaders the minimum wage, overtime, workers’ compensation, paid sick leave, and other benefits. The law goes into effect on January 1, 2016. An identical bill, referred to as the Cheerleaders’ Fair Pay Act (CFPA), was introduced in the New York State Assembly on June 3, 2015. A trend to introduce similar legislation may emerge in states that currently have pending suits filed by NFL cheerleaders, such as New York, New Jersey, and Ohio.
07/09/15 - Women serving in the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps now have the right to take 18 weeks of paid maternity leave, three times the amount they had previously. The change is effective immediately, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus announced Thursday, and will apply retroactively to any woman who has been granted maternity leave since January 1, 2015.
07/02/15 - The Montgomery County Council has frozen the minimum wage for tipped workers in the county at $4 per hour, with the goal of keeping costs competitive for restaurant owners. Previously, the maximum tip credit was equal to the county’s minimum wage less 50 percent of the (lower) state minimum wage.
06/24/15 - Ikea's U.S division is raising the minimum wage for the second year in a row. Starting Jan. 1, Ikea's average minimum hourly wage will increase to $11.87, which is $4.62 above the current federal wage and marks a $1.11 increase, or 10 percent, from this year's average minimum pay. The starting wage for any given Ikea store in the U.S. reflects the cost of living in that particular area as determined by the MIT Living Wage Calculator, which takes into account the local cost of rent, food, transportation and the like.
06/18/15 - The Republican-led Michigan House on Tuesday approved a bill prohibiting local governments from setting minimum wage laws or benefit requirements. The bill will return to the Senate for approval of minor House modifications, and is expected to pass. Michigan's minimum wage is $8.15 an hour.
06/15/2015 - Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Saturday signed a bill to increase the minimum wage in the nation's second-largest city to $15 an hour by 2020 from the current $9. The 67-percent pay increase would be implemented gradually, starting at $10.50 an hour for larger employers in 2016, and gradually going up each year until it reaches $15 in 2020.
California's Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014 is the nation's second state-law mandate requiring paid sick leave. Connecticut signed the first paid sick leave into law in 2011. Effective July 1, 2015 California's law requires all employers to provide California employees (with some exceptions) with paid sick leave. See more at California Sick Leave.
Massachusetts became the 3d state of the nation to guarantee paid sick leave, with voters approving on November 4th 2014 a sick-leave ballot initiative. Under the measure employees can earn one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked, to be capped at 40 days of leave per calendar year, starting July 1, 2015. Small employers with 10 or fewer workers won't have to provide paid sick leave, but their employees could earn and use up to 40 hours of unpaid sick time. Read more about Massachusetts Paid Sick Leave.