Florida ranks a not-too-impressive No. 37 on Oxfam America’s Best and Worst States to Work Index.
The report, released to coincide with Labor Day, cites the state’s $8.25 per hour minimum wage — less than 32 percent of the estimated living wage for a family of four of $25.87.
Moreover, cities and counties lack the power to boost the wage locally.
Florida ranked No. 26 on that score.
It ranked No. 30 for the right to organize. The report mentions the state’s right-to-work law and lack of protections for contract workers. On the plus side, Florida protects collective bargaining for teachers, police officers, and firefighters.
The state’s lowest ranking is for worker-protection policies. Here, the report cites a host of factors, including the lack of mandated family and medical leave, or sick leave in general; accommodations for pregnant or breastfeeding women on the job; protections against sexual harassment; or prohibition against workplace secrecy policies.
“With the Trump administration and a conservative U.S. Supreme Court chipping away at workers’ rights, this new report underscores the importance of state policies that reinforce those rights and support working families,” said Sam Munger, external affairs director for the State Innovation Exchange.
That “strategy center” provides research and other support for progressive state legislators, and circulated the findings in a news release.
“And it’s no coincidence that states with more progressive policies score better in quality of life and health outcomes,” Munger said.
The report finds Washington, D.C.; Washington state; California; and Massachusetts are the best places to work, “thanks to progressive policies on wages, worker protections, and the right to organize.”
The report asserts:
“In 2018, workers are not sharing in the bounty of our thriving economy — and the federal government is not going to make changes that matter. Some states are taking steps to keep working families out of poverty, and to give them a decent chance.”