The Independent Bakers Association applauds Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY), Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) and Congressman Phil Roe (R-TN) for their leadership in introducing the Modern Worker Empowerment Act, HR 4069, in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill will unify the standard for what constitutes an independent contract under federal law, by aligning an outlier in the Fair Labor Standards Act with the legal standard used under nearly all other federal statutes and at common law.
As members of the House Education & Labor Committee, the cosponsors of the Modern Worker Empowerment Act focus on the future of work in this country, which hinges on freedom and flexibility. The bill serves as a practical alternative to the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act, HR 2474, introduced by Committee Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA) in May. The PRO Act is widely viewed as a "wish list" for union leaders and aims to preserve only the rights of certain workers to accomplish certain goals. Among its provisions is a change to the existing independent contractor standard under the National Labor Relations Act, creating more confusion and less consistency across federal law.
IBA and its allies have been outspoken about the potential negative effects the PRO Act will have on many businesses, including independent bakeries and allied trades. We will continue to promote the Modern Worker Empowerment Act as an important step in streamlining federal regulations so IBA members across the nation can thrive.