DRAFT for American Library Association to take up at Summer 2006 Conference.
The American Library Association – Allied Professional Association,
Recognizing that the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA) represented an historic effort to lessen unemployment and strengthen living standards for workers in the United States, ranking in the view of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, with only the possible exception of Social Security, as “the most far-reaching, far-sighted, program for the benefit of workers ever adopted here or in any other country”; that the FLSA requirement of paying time-and-a-half for hours beyond 40 in a workweek serves both FLSA objectives of spreading employment and improving living standards; and the U. S. Department of Labor (DOL) has accordingly defined the exemptions from the FLSA overtime pay protections for executive, administrative, and professional employees narrowly, until this year; - and
Observing that DOL issued proposed regulations on March 31, 2003 that would so dramatically expand the exemptions for executive, administrative, and professional employees as to remove more than eight million U. S. workers from overtime pay protections, which would lead to those Americans working longer hours for lover pay, to the detriment of their living standards, families, communities, and civic participation; and
Since, the proposed regulations would find the already undercompensated library professionals with longer hours, lower pay, higher quit rates and less successful recruiting efforts all of which would worsen already difficult employment conditions for library workers: and
Having already publicly supported the expansion of overtime pay protections and opposed their diminution, and thus joined a national outcry leading to majority votes in the U. S. Senate and House of Representatives that would require DOL not to cut back overtime pay protections for covered workers while allowing DOL to expand those protections to workers who do not have them now; therefore
1. Urges the President of the United States and DOL to withdraw the proposed regulations insofar as they exclude workers from overtime pay protections and to retain the proposed regulations to the extent that they expand the categories of protected workers;
2. Ureges the U. S. Congress to continue to protect the integrity of the FLSA, and thus wages, hours and living standards for U. S. workers;
3. Encourages other professional associations and societies representing library workers in the United States by speaing out in favor of expanding overtime pay protections for low-wage workers rather than cutting them back for already covered workers; and
4. Instructs its staff to send copies of this policy statement to the President of the United States, the Secreatary of Labor, and every member of Congress and to publicize it through print, online and other media of the Association.