Fair Work Week Legislation will Help Businesses and Families Thrive (July 7, 2017)

By Wendy Collie, New Seasons

For most working Oregonians, calendars are busier than ever. Work, child care pick-up, classes, vacations: There are plenty of appointments and activities that require us to plan ahead. Many of us are able to arrange our lives around a work schedule that’s set a few weeks in advance, at a minimum. But for many Oregonians working in the retail and service sector, reality is often very different.

In a recent study from Labor Education and Research Center at the University of Oregon, researchers surveyed nearly 750 Oregonians and found that 73 percent were notified of their work schedule 14 or fewer days in advance and 16 percent survey had less than 24-hour notice of their shifts. That means people often work wildly varying shifts and may be asked to be available on-call, which can lead to variation in total hours worked and, consequently, swings in weekly pay. Nearly half the respondents report financial difficulties and have had to resort to unsustainable financial strategies. Many give up furthering their education and have difficulty finding and maintaining a second job.

To address this challenge, Oregon lawmakers just passed the Fair Work Week Act.

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