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California labor hotline aims to combat wage and hour complaints

Employees in California have a new tool available to them when they are faced with unlawful workplace activities. California's Labor Enforcement Task Force along with other agency partners have launched a new hotline with the goal of providing workers and employers alike with somewhere they can safely report illegal employment activities if they suspect a business of using illegal tactics to gain an edge over their competitors.

The new public hotline will be a valuable tool in gathering information about employers who may view wage and hour laws and safety standards as a mere annoyance rather than a requirement in their quest for profits. The hotline is yet another step in ensuring California's workers receive not only proper wages per state law, but also a safe environment in which to work.

The task force was developed just for this reason, as well as to ensure that all employers pay their required taxes, fees and penalties when they violate California's labor laws. It is also charged with eliminating unfair business practices by combating underground businesses that violate state and federal employment laws with an eye towards improving the state's business climate.

Businesses that tend to operate underground often violate laws that were created to not only protect workers but California's economy as well. By not paying income taxes, not paying workers a fair wage or refusing to carry workers' compensation insurance, these employers are giving themselves an unfair advantage over other legitimate employers who choose to obey the law.

Employees who feel they may have been cheated out of over-time pay or their employers are abusing other employment laws, not only can they call the hotline at 855-297-5322, they can also contact an attorney experienced in handling employment law issues to ensure their rights are protected and they receive the compensation they have rightfully earned.

Source: The Sacramento Bee, "Labor Enforcement Task Force Announces Public Hotline for Complaints and Tips," May 23, 2012

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