Fighting Wage Preemption: How Workers Have Lost Billions in Wages and How We Can Restore Local Democracy

Failing to stop the adoption of local pro-worker laws, the corporate lobby has persuaded state-level lawmakers to revoke the underlying local authority to adopt such policies, in some cases rolling back wage increases that were already enacted by city and county governments. In doing so, the corporate lobby has not only captured the political lever closest to the people (their city or county government), it has also hampered the democratic process at its most intimate level.

A total of 25 states have statutes preempting local minimum wage laws. To date, 12 cities and counties in six states (Alabama, Iowa, Florida, Kentucky, Missouri, and Wisconsin) have approved local minimum wage laws only to see them invalidated by state statute, harming hundreds of thousands of workers in the process, many of whom face high levels of poverty.

Read more in a recent NELP report:

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