Several bills designed to improve workers’ lives – including one that would raise the state’s minimum wage from $10.10 to $15 an hour by 2021 and index it to keep pace with inflation – have been approved by the Connecticut Labor and Public Employees Committee.Other items advanced by the Labor and Public Employees Committee include legislation that would expand Connecticut’s family and sick leave laws, update sexual harassment training requirements, and increase economic security for workers, women and families.
An equal pay bill approved by the Committee would forbid employers from asking job candidates about their past salaries, something supporters said contributes to the gender pay gap. The sick leave bill would require all employers with 20 or more workers to provide their hourly employees with at least 40 hours of paid sick leave, while employers with 19 or fewer workers would be required to provide 40 hours of unpaid sick leave.
Another bill would create a trust fund into which Connecticut workers pay 0.5 percent of their weekly earnings. Administered by the Labor Department, the fund could then issue 12 work weeks of family leave compensation to covered employees, or a combination of family and medical leave compensation.
The bills will need approval from the House and Senate, as well as from Malloy, before they become law.