WASHINGTON - JUNE 25 - After the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, the federal reconstruction effort was accompanied by the President's suspension of certain labor laws and an influx of immigrant labor. The often overlooked result was a marked decline in working conditions and enforcement of workplace safety and wage laws.
The Domestic Policy Subcommittee, with oversight jurisdiction over the Department of Labor (DOL), will examine the record of labor enforcement law and evaluate whether the DOL staff is adequate in size and skill to address the situation facing in New Orleans post-Katrina. The hearing will also inquire whether the President's suspension of certain labor laws ushered in a period of lawlessness and reduced law enforcement, whether existing regulations serve the best interest of workers and whether the DOL's budget is adequate to meet the needs of the workers in New Orleans.
Witnesses for the hearing include:
Mr. Jeffrey Steele, former employee of the Army Corps. of Engineers
Mr. Ted Smuckler, Director of Public Policy, Immigrant Worker Justice
Ms. Jennifer Rosenbaum, Staff Attorney, Immigrant Justice Project, Southern Poverty Law Center
Mr. Saket Soni, Workers' Justice Center for Racial Equality
Mr. Jacob Horowitz, Workers' Justice Center for Racial Equality
Mr. Paul DeCamp, Administrator, Wage and Hour Division, Employment Standards Administration, Department of Labor
Ms. Tracie Washington, President and CEO, Louisiana Justice Institute
Ms. Catherine Ruckelshaus, Litigation Director, National Employment Law Project