NEW YORK – Today, Tali Farhadian Weinstein, candidate for Manhattan district attorney, announced a multifaceted plan to tackle workplace abuses.
Click here to read Tali’s Worker Protection Plan.
From wage theft to harassment to safety and health violations, laborers who form the backbone of our city face precarious conditions. Each week, unscrupulous employers steal millions from New York City workers through wage theft. Already at unacceptable levels beforehand, the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated the exploitation.
“We have celebrated essential workers during the pandemic. But far too many are taken advantage of and not treated with the respect they deserve,” said Tali Farhadian Weinstein. “As district attorney, I will fight to ensure that all New Yorkers have the right to a safe and healthy workplace. Those who cheat and steal will be held accountable.”
Nearly 70 percent of low-wage workers encounter a wage violation in any given week, and legal aid workers note that implementing the state’s minimum wage increased the abuse. Now low-wage workers struggling with economic uncertainty and higher unemployment are at even higher risk of abuse, with workers more desperate to hold onto their jobs and less likely to report violations.
Tali recognizes we must protect these workers, many of whom are immigrants, like her. She has spent her career fighting for immigrants — from successfully suing ICE to keep them out of courthouses to working with domestic violence organizations catered towards immigrant women — and she will continue this important work as district attorney.
Tali will build The Bureau of Worker Protection (BWP) to house a dedicated team of investigators and prosecutors from the Construction Fraud Task Force and DANY’s white collar, financial fraud, immigration, community partnership and other relevant units. The BWP team will demonstrate a commitment to investigating and charging labor crimes and workplace abuses across all industry sectors, putting dishonest employers on notice.
Because some workplace abuses involve human trafficking, sexual assault and gender-based crimes, the BWP will also work closely with Tali’s newly-formed Bureau of Gender-Based Violence. Tali will also collaborate with community organizations to learn directly from workers about the types of harassment they face.