Labor & Employment Project
The Labor & Employment Project is directed by CRLA Foundation Deputy Director Mark Schacht, who is a 10 year veteran of Capitol Hill, where he worked as a congressional staffer, civil rights lobbyist and as Executive Director of the Farmworker Justice Fund (now Farmworker Justice).
Since moving to California in 1988, he has lobbied on behalf of either CRLA, Inc. or CRLA Foundation in Sacramento, and has authored more than two dozen laws that expand workers’ rights, improve their legal remedies, and attack the worst abuses of unscrupulous employers and labor contractors in the underground economy. Currently, he also serves as the Foundation’s Legislative Director, heads up the Temporary Foreign Worker Project (see below), and, since 2006, has served as a member of the board of directors of the Consumer Federation of California Education Foundation.
CRLAF Sponsored Bills:
AB 2187 (Strengthening Labor Code Criminal Prohibitions Against Theft of Wages)—Vetoed.
[Bill Text] [Fact Sheet] [CRLAF Letter to Governor] [LA Times on Governor’s Veto] [Video of CRLAF's Testimony before the Senate Labor Committee on AB 2187 in July 2010] (PLEASE READ BEFORE DOWNLOADING VIDEO: This file contains 30 minutes of video testimony by the author, the sponsor and principal witnesses for and against AB 2187, and shows the give and take involved in moving legislation opposed by major business interests through today's state Legislature. It will take some time to download, but if you use Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser, with a current version of Windows Media Player, the video will be buffered and should start to play in a small window within 90 seconds.Enlarging the window to full screen is not recommended because it will dramatically worsen video quality.)
Other State Legislation Supported or Opposed by CRLAF
SB 1121 (Farm Worker Overtime Parity)—Vetoed. [Bill Text] [CRLAF Support Letter to Governor]
SB 989 (Hostile PAGA Legislation)—Died in Legislature [Bill Text] [CRLAF Opposition Letter]
SB 789/SB 1474 (ALRA Elections/Union Recognition Improvements)--Vetoed [CRLAF Support Letter]
SB 1267 (Weakened Itemized Pay Stub Laws)--Died in Legislature [CRLAF Opposition Letter]
AB 2424 (Weakened Discharged Worker Immediate Pay Requirements)--Died in Legislature [CRLAF Opposition Letter]
AB 846 (Increased Penalties for Health-related Violations)--Died in Legislature [CRLAF Support Letter]
Legislative Histories of Recently-Enacted CRLAF Sponsored or Co-Sponsored Legislation
Labor Code Section 98.2 (Employer Appeal Bonds) [AB 2772—Legislative History]
Labor Code Section 206.5 (Falsified Statements of Hours Worked) [AB 2075--Legislative History]
Labor Code Section 2698 (Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act--PAGA)
[SB 796 (2003)—Legislative History & SB 1809 (2004) Legislative History]
Labor Code Section 2810 (Financially Insufficient Labor Contracts) [SB 179—Legislative History]
Recent CRLAF White Papers
Temporary Foreign Agricultural Worker Project
CRLAF also monitors on a weekly basis federal H-2A (temporary foreign agricultural guest worker) applications by growers and labor contractors for 25 California counties, and files Public Record Act requests and Freedom of Information Act requests for documents submitted by these entities in support of their applications for vulnerable guest workers. We analyze this information, circulate it to other farm worker advocates and unions, and submit joint comments and corrections to the U.S. Department of Labor requesting either withdrawal, modification or denial of the growers'/FLCs' guest worker applications. On occasion, we sue to protect the rights of both H-2A and US workers laboring for these growers and FLCs, and we lobby for federal immigration reform (such as for passage of AG-JOBS). This work is generously funded in part by the Rosenberg Foundation of San Francisco, California.
Recent Temporary Foreign Agricultural Worker Project Activity: Click here to read a demand letter sent on October 1, 2010 by CRLA, CRLAF and UFW to the US DOL urging denial of certification and/or revocation of certification (if it had been granted) for the admission of more than 400 H-2A lettuce harvesters sought by the agri-business firm Tanimura & Antle in Arizona and California.Click here for a copy of Tanimura & Antle's public H-2A application documents.
Some Important California Labor Statutes of Importance to Farm Worker Advocates
Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act
Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act
Financially Sufficient Labor Contracts Act