April 20, 2016 — Dozens of workers, community members, and labor leaders rallied outside of City Hall to to react as Mayor Garcetti delivered the 2016-2017 proposed budget for the city of Los Angeles. The budget proposed funding for the new Office of Wage Standards, charged with ending wage theft in the city. The mayor’s proposal allocates 2.6 million for the new office instead of the 4.2 million proposed by the Bureau of Contract Enforcement.
Members of the coalition expressed disappointment the 1.6 million gap on the steps of the South Lawn to members of the press. See coverage.
Miguel Vasquez, member leader of the Restaurant Opportunities Center-Los Angeles (ROC-LA), spoke at the rally and to the press, sharing his own powerful story of wage theft in Los Angeles.
“A lot of people took advantage of me and didn’t pay me fairly. They stole from me. They would say I cannot pay you for these two weeks– I will pay you in the next two weeks. But they never paid me what I was owed,” said Miguel. “What we live through is an injustice. We all have rights and are human beings. We have families to feed and maintain.”
The budget is now scheduled to go through a series of revisions where members of the Los Angeles Coalition Against Wage Theft will be advocating for full funding to create strong enforcement to protect workers for wage theft. See images of the rally.