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A cutting edge standard for good jobs

A good job means more than just a decent wage. That's why the comprehensive living wage policy includes:

Check out our report on why a living wage is needed, with detailed proposals on how to protect workers

With around 17,000 workers and $2.25 billion in contracts, the County of Santa Clara is the second largest employer in the region. The Living Wage ordinance ensures that taxpayer money gives working families access to the middle class, shrinks the gender gap in wages and benefits, and grows our communities. 

Drawing on best practices from across the nation, we proposed and won a next-generation, comprehensive living wage. Covering Santa Clara County workers and employees of contractors, the ordinance provides:

Fair Compensation

Fair Compensation

No one who works hard all day long should live in poverty. The living wage will ensure that County and contracted workers are paid enough to take care of their families, and that wages keep pace with the growing cost of living. It will also encourage contractors to provide retirement benefits and paid time off for jury duty.

Healthcare and Earned Sick Leave

Healthcare and Earned Sick Leave

No one should have to choose between staying home when they're sick and being able to pay the bills. The living wage will ensure that workers earn paid sick leave, so they can take care of themselves or their kids when they get ill. And it will require contractors to either provide health insurance, or pay a higher wage so employees can purchase insurance on their own.

Opportunity for our Diverse Local Workforce

Opportunity for our Diverse Local Workforce

Everyone deserves a fair chance at a good job. The living wage will open a door to disadvantaged communities, by encouraging contractors to hire local workers and graduates of career training programs supported by the County. It will also help formerly incarcerated people build productive careers, by prohibiting employers from asking if job applicants have old convictions.

Fair Workweeks

Fair Workweeks

Even a decent hourly wage is tough to live on if you can't get enough hours or have unpredictable shifts. The living wage will encourage turning part-time positions into full-time jobs, and keeping the same workers when contractors change. It will make work schedules more predictable, so workers can arrange childcare or take classes. And it will give employees the right to request flexible work arrangements, so they can avoid rush hour or attend school events with their kids.

A Voice at Work

A Voice at Work

Workers deserve to be able to speak up without fear of firing or retaliation. The living wage will prohibit employers from interfering with workers' legal rights, and ensure employees can have a say in their jobs.

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