House Passes New Democrat-Led Amendment to Improve Workforce Data Collection
WASHINGTON – The U.S. House of Representatives has passed an amendment championed by the New Democrat Coalition aimed at modernizing how the Bureau of Labor Statistics measures labor trends and surveys people in non-traditional work arrangements.
The amendment, sponsored by Representatives Bill Foster, D-Ill., Lisa Blunt Rochester, D-Ala., Chris Pappas, D-N.H., and Haley Stevens, D-Mich., was added to H.R. 2740, the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, Legislative Branch, Defense, State, Foreign Operations, and Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act, 2020.
“As advances in technology and artificial intelligence continue to impact our economy and the nature of work, it is vital we have access to the most accurate data on how these trends are affecting American workers, said Foster, co-chair of the New Democrat Coalition’s Future of Work Task Force.
“The Bureau of Labor Statistics is the gold-standard for tracking workforce trends and providing policymakers with reliable projections, but it is not properly equipped to incorporate the effects of rapid technological change,” he continued. “This amendment is an important first step in making sure we effectively account for these changes so that we can pursue policies aimed at building an economy that works for everyone.”
The nature of work is changing, triggering a demand for technological skills across industries and all worker skill levels.
Advancing technology is also disrupting and shrinking traditional middle-skill jobs in favor of new ones. These new middle- and high-skill jobs are clustering in and near certain urban areas, leaving many Americans geographically disconnected from opportunity.
Not only do the skills earned today have a shorter shelf-life than in the past, but the traditional employer-employee relationship is changing as some work becomes more short-term and project based. All the while, our ability to measure these shifts has not kept up with the pace of technological and socioeconomic change.
The purpose of the amendment is to instruct BLS to accept a wider and more forward-looking range of inputs into its range of projections for its workforce of the future, and to encourage BLS to conduct the Contingent Worker and Alternative Work Arrangement Supplement to the Current Population Survey on a more frequent basis.
The amendment’s sponsors said BLS should now submit to Congress an estimate of the resources it would need to make a range of forward-looking estimates, including consultation with those industries that are driving rapid technological change and those that will be affected by that change to account for the increasing rate of technological job displacement.
In The News
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - It could be the biggest labor action in Hollywood since a Writers Guild of America strike... Read More
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - It could be the biggest labor action in Hollywood since a Writers Guild of America strike crippled the entertainment industry for some 14 weeks in late 2007 and early 2008. Beginning next week, members of the International Association of Theatrical Stage Employees... Read More
Richard Trumka, the powerful president of the AFL-CIO who rose from the coal mines of Pennsylvania to preside over one... Read More
Richard Trumka, the powerful president of the AFL-CIO who rose from the coal mines of Pennsylvania to preside over one of the largest labor organizations in the world, died Thursday. He was 72. In a note to staff, Liz Shuler, secretary treasurer for the 12.5 million-member... Read More
The Labor Department has made $1.5 million available to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the... Read More
The Labor Department has made $1.5 million available to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands to develop partnerships with community-based organizations and other non-profits seeking to empower women workers by strengthening their understanding of their labor rights and... Read More
If the White House and Congress are serious about making clean energy a meaningful part of the still-to-finalized infrastructure package,... Read More
If the White House and Congress are serious about making clean energy a meaningful part of the still-to-finalized infrastructure package, they need to enact a 10-year extension of an investment tax credit that has buoyed the industry in recent years. At least that’s the position of... Read More
National Nurses United, the largest union of registered nurses in the United States, issued a rebuke of the Centers for... Read More
National Nurses United, the largest union of registered nurses in the United States, issued a rebuke of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated public health recommendations for people who are fully vaccinated for COVID-19. The CDC’s updated guidance states “fully vaccinated people no longer... Read More
Amazon appears to have enough votes to thwart an effort to unionize its warehouse in Bessemer, Ala. By Friday afternoon,... Read More
Amazon appears to have enough votes to thwart an effort to unionize its warehouse in Bessemer, Ala. By Friday afternoon, the company had crossed the threshold to secure a majority of votes, with 1,700 warehouse workers voting against the union and 700 voting in favor. A... Read More