Increased penalties for wage theft, increase funding for Workforce Development

What’s at stake:

When unscrupulous employers take advantage of vulnerable workers and don’t pay minimum wage, overtime, and sometimes not even at all it has far reaching effects. Wage theft costs thousands of low-wage Iowa workers $600 million a year and keeps $60 million in annual tax revenue out of state coffers. Combating wage theft makes sense for Iowa’s workers, businesses, our local economies and our state budget.


What we’re pushing for:

Strong wage theft protection


The Wage Theft Protection Act is an initiative to ensure all workers get paid the wages they are owed. It increases penalties for employers that fail to pay their employees, provides that victims of wage theft can get their wages back plus interest, and provides more protections from retaliation for workers who report wage theft.

Not only does this bill ensure that workers are getting paid, it also levels the playing field for businesses who are doing things right but can’t compete against the bad apples. It will help the state recoup much-needed tax dollars for the state budget and ensure that workers can be an active part of the economy again.


Increased Funding for Iowa Workforce Development


Right now, Iowa Workforce Devleopment (IWD) only has one dedicated staff to investigate and follow up with the growing number of wage theft complaints. Hiring more wage theft inspectors at Workforce Development will more than pay for itself in economic development dividends.



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