Nevada Democrats had a great Election Day in 2018, and Nevada workers are about to start seeing the effects of that. Gov. Steve SisolakÂ signed a package of major bills, including one giving 20,000 state workers collective bargainingÂ rights, a minimum wage increase, paid sick leave, and more.
The stateâ€™s minimum wage will only go up to $12â€”$11 if the employer offers insuranceâ€”and wonâ€™t reach that level until 2024, with the first 75-cent raise not coming until July 2020. Compared with the laws taking some statesâ€™ minimums up to $15 on a faster timetableÂ thatâ€™s not spectacular, but since Nevadaâ€™s current minimum wage is $7.25 for employers that offer insurance and $8.25 for ones that donâ€™t, itâ€™s still a substantial improvement for an estimated 300,000 Nevada workers. (And something for worker-activists to build on, perhaps.)
Workers at businesses with more than 50 employees will also start getting paid sick leave, up to 40 hours a year for full-time workers. That law will take effect January 1. Nevada will joinÂ 10 states and Washington, D.C.,Â in having a paid sick leave law.
The lawÂ giving publicÂ workers collective bargaining rights is â€śyet another massive win for working people and the labor movement as union momentum continues to grow across the country,â€ť according to AFSCME. Harry Schiffman, a local AFSCME president in the state called it â€śa historic day for state employees and all Nevadans, as collective bargaining rights will mean a voice on the job to make meaningful changes in our workplaces and communities.â€ť
This blog was originally published at Daily Kos on June 15, 2019. Reprinted with permission.