Northampton adopts ‘Fair Employment City’ status with unanimous council vote (MA)

By Mary Serreze
on February 03, 2017 at 1:30 AM

NORTHAMPTON — The nine-member City Council took a public stand against wage theft, worker misclassification, and poor working conditions as it unanimously approved a resolution declaring Northampton a “fair employment city.”

It was one of several labor-related actions taken before a roomful of advocates packed into Council Chambers at 212 Main Street on Thursday night. The crowd broke into applause at the conclusion of the roll-call vote.

“This has been a long, complicated, and nuanced process, unifying lots of varying agendas and priorities,” said City Council president Bill Dwight.

The resolution declares in part that “decent working conditions and fair wages for workers is an essential part of investment in local economies and sustainable employment practices.”

It takes aim at the misclassification of employees as independent contractors, saying the practice denies workers critical benefits and protections to which they are entitled.

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