Labor

The United States economy is supported by a highly innovative, creative, productive, and industrious workforce. The jobs that make up the U.S. economy—and the businesses that create those jobs—help workers provide for their families and lead healthy, comfortable, and fulfilling lives.

To keep the economy vibrant and to continue to create opportunity for workers, we must ensure that new businesses can be launched and current ones can be expanded. The U.S. Chamber promotes workplace policies that will enhance, not inhibit, economic growth and job creation.

 

Projects and Programs

 

Employment Policy Priorities

Independent Contracting

The concept of working as an independent contractor has been around for centuries. In recent years, new technology has given millions of Americans the opportunity to earn money, work flexible hours and be their own boss through independent contracting. Military spouses, transitioning service members, stay at home parents, and people just looking to earn a few extra dollars have all benefited from this type of work—not to mention the millions of consumers who are able to purchase all manner of services right from their phone.

More traditional businesses like insurance, transportation, logistics, technology, and journalism also use the independent contractor model to one degree or another. The fact is that the “traditional” employment model, where your employer tells you where, when, and how to work just doesn’t fit every worker, or every business.

Unfortunately, some states are looking to pass new restrictions on independent contracting. Through laws like AB-5 in California, legislators are threatening to close off the opportunities offered by independent contracting, and smother new business models that benefit workers and consumers.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is committed to protecting the opportunities offered by flexible employment models. Lean more about our work on this issue below.

SaveFlexWork.com

Commonsense Immigration Reform

Commonsense immigration reform will boost economic growth, create jobs, and spur innovation and entrepreneurship. It will also reaffirm America's legacy of being an open and welcoming country where anyone who works hard and follows the rules can achieve his or her dreams.

Throughout our history, America has attracted and welcomed the most talented and the hardest working people to our shores. But today our immigration system is broken and failing to meet the needs of our society, our economy, our businesses, and our workers.

To help advance comprehensive reform that includes border security, the Chamber's Employment Policy division provides leadership to a broad coalition including businesses, labor, law enforcement, the faith-based community, and various immigrant-advocacy organizations.

Though there may be several different approaches to fixing our system, meaningful and lasting reform can only be achieved through bipartisan legislation, which is the ultimate goal of the Chamber’s immigration program.

Learn more about what the Chamber is doing on immigration.

Department of Labor

The U.S. Chamber believes the Department of Labor (DOL) must partner with both employers and employees to effectively advance the goals of the wide array of laws it administers and enforces. 

The DOL oversees such diverse areas as minimum wage, overtime, worker safety in general industry as well as mining, federal contractor compliance with affirmative action requirements, employee leave requirements under the Family and Medical Leave Act, labor union financial accountability, and contractor wage payments on federally funded or supported construction and service jobs.  Employees depend on the Department to safeguard their rights, while employers look to the DOL for information and guidance on meeting their obligations.

The Employment Policy Division works with many of DOL’s component agencies including the Wage and Hour Division, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the Office of Federal Contractor Compliance Programs, the Office of Labor-Management Standards, and the Office of the Solicitor. 

Learn more about what we're doing on DOL issues.

Restoring Common Sense at the NLRB

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) was created in 1935 to be a neutral arbiter in the field of labor law. 

During the Obama administration, however, the agency engaged in an aggressive one-sided agenda aimed at growing labor unions at any cost. Rather than act as an impartial referee, it issued many decisions that overturned decades of well settled precedents intended to give unions an advantage in organizing campaigns. 

Restoring the appropriate balance to labor law will provide much-needed stability, and certainty for American businesses and workers. 

Fortunately, the NLRB has new members, including Chairman John Ring and a new General Counsel, who have already begun the work of revisiting Obama-era precedents. 

Learn more about what we're doing on issues related to NLRB.

Protecting Retirement Security

The Employment Policy Division is committed to protecting the retirement security of America’s workforce, and promoting policies that will continue the success of the private retirement system.

We seek to maintain a sound legal framework that encourages employers to offer retirement plans, address the demographic challenges facing the system, and encourage innovation and flexibility to help the private retirement system reach additional types of workers.

Learn more about what we're doing on retirement issues.

State Labor Issues

Advocates of increased regulation are not satisfied with just pursuing action at the federal level.  They have also taken their agenda to state and even local government.  

In the process, they are creating a patchwork of different standards that multi-state employers can find difficult to meet.  Significant state and local regulations include:

  •  - Minimum Wage
  •  - Misclassification
  •  - Wage Theft
  •  - Paid Leave
  •  - Regulating Pre-Employment Inquiries
  •  - Equal Pay
  •  - Labor Peace
  •  - Predictive Scheduling
  •  - Opportunity to Work
  •  - Overtime

 

Learn more about what we're doing on the state level.

The PRO Act

Unions and their allies are promoting a bill that would destabilize America’s workplaces and impose a long list of dangerous changes to labor law. The proposal, called the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act (H.R. 2474 and S. 1306), is a litany of almost every failed idea from the past 30 years of labor policy. The PRO Act would undermine worker rights, ensnare employers in unrelated labor disputes, disrupt the economy, and force individual Americans to pay union dues regardless of their wishes. 

Recent Activity

Press ReleaseJul 29, 2021 - 4:15pm

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Statement on Biden Administration’s COVID-19 Federal Workplace Protocols

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The following statement can be attributed to the Neil Bradley, executive vice president and chief policy officer, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, on today’s announcement of the Biden administration’s new COVID federal workplace protocols.  

Press ReleaseJul 22, 2021 - 4:00pm

U.S. Chamber Applauds Commerce Department, Sec. Raimondo for Investing in America’s Workforce Through New Grant Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The following statement can be attributed to U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Suzanne Clark.

Letters to CongressJul 21, 2021 - 11:00am

U.S. Chamber Letter on S. 1486, "Pregnant Workers Fairness Act"

This Hill letter was sent to the Members of the United States Senate on S. 1486, the "Pregnant Workers Fairness Act." This bill is on the Legislative Leadership list for the “How They Voted” scorecard.

Letters to CongressJul 20, 2021 - 1:30pm

U.S. Chamber Letter on the Bipartisan Border Solutions Act

This Hill letter was sent to the Members of the United States Congress, supporting S. 1358 / H.R. 2839, the “Bipartisan Border Solutions Act of 2021.”

ArticleJul 20, 2021 - 10:30am
Golden sunshine on the United States Capitol.

The Hill: Labor's Legislative Overreach

Originally published in The HIll, July 20, 2021

Letters to CongressJul 19, 2021 - 12:15pm

Chamber Letter on H.R. 2795, the “DHS Blue Campaign Enhancement Act.”

This Hill letter was sent to Members of the House of Representatives supporting H.R. 2795, the “DHS Blue Campaign Enhancement Act.”

ArticleJul 19, 2021 - 10:30am

UPDATE: USMCA Rapid Response Labor Mechanism

An earlier blog posted on July 8, 2021 described a USMCA complaint which alleged a violation of rights occurred at a GM facility in Sialo, Mexico. On that same day, the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced that the U.S.

Above the FoldJul 15, 2021 - 10:45am
Road billboard advertising "Now Hiring All Shifts"

Less than Half of Small Business Owners Can Find Workers, New Poll Shows

A new US Chamber study shows that most small businesses are struggling to find workers with the right combination of skills and experience.

Letters to CongressJul 14, 2021 - 10:30am

U.S. Chamber Letter on FY22 Labor and HHS Appropriations

This Hill letter was sent to the Members of the House Committee on Appropriations, on the Fiscal Year 2022 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations legislation.

Letters to CongressJul 13, 2021 - 5:15pm

U.S. Chamber Letter on the Nomination of David Weil for the Department of Labor

This Hill letter was sent to Members of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions regarding the nomination of David Weil to be the Administrator of the Wage and Hour Division (WHD) at the Department of Labor (DOL).