2020 General Assembly Session

In 2020, the legislative session was shortened due to the coronavirus. UULM-MD supported SB 539/HB 839 - Family and Medical Leave Insurance (FAMLI) Program Act, which did not make it out of committee into settled law. However, the subsequent lockdown and pandemic recession has proven the need for this bill more than ever, so we will be supporting again in the 2021 Legislative Session. 

In 2019, UULM-MD supported the "Fight for Fifteen" to further increase the state minimum wage. The legislation will:

  • provide a minimum wage of $15 per hour by 2023 with increases indexed to the cost of living beginning in 2023,

  • allow local governments to provide minimum wages in excess of the proposed state minimum wage,

  • remove exceptions for young workers,

  • provide increases in the minimum wage for tipped workers to $15 by 2026, and

  • provide increased funding for community service providers to accommodate the minimum wage increase. 

 

Why We Fought For $15 

A $15 minimum wage means a better Maryland for all of us: 

  • Raising the minimum wage to $15 for all workers will benefit over 700,000 households in Maryland 

  • A $15 minimum wage would benefit hundreds of thousands of kids. Over 300,000 children have at least one parent that would be affected by a $15 minimum wage in Maryland. 

  • Raising the wage won’t hurt the economy: it will grow it! The most rigorous research shows minimum wage increases do not reduce employment. In Seattle, the first major city to adopt a $15 minimum wage, the region’s unemployment rate hit an eight-year low. 

  • For small businesses, raising the wage will bring in new customers, raising businesses’ bottom lines and increasing profits. 

Prior Session Action

 

In 2014, we supported legislation that increased the minimum wage to $10.10 by 2018.

 

In 2015, we helped pass pay equity measures to address the continuing gap in compensation between white men on the one hand and women and minorities on the other. The legislation:

  • strengthened and expanded equal pay for equal work laws in Maryland to all employers, by ensuring that businesses cannot penalize employees for discussing salaries.

  • Prohibited employers from paying disparate wages

  • Allowed for greater sunlight on currently existing pay disparities and broadens existing State standards used to determine whether unlawful compensation discrimination exists.

  • Specified that the Attorney General can also enforce pay discrimination claims, and

  • Prohibited employers from providing less favorable employment opportunities based on gender

 

In 2017, the General Assembly passed the Maryland Healthy Working Families Act (HB 1) which requires an employer with more than 14 employees to have a sick and safe leave policy under which an employee earns at least 1 hour of paid sick and safe leave, at the same rate as the employee normally earns, for every 30 hours an employee works. An employer with 14 or fewer employees, based on the average monthly number of employees during the preceding year, must have a sick and safe leave policy that provides an employee with at least 1 hour of unpaid sick and safe leave for every 30 hours an employee works. Unfortunately, the Governor vetoed the bill. 

 

In 2018, we supported successful efforts to override the Governor’s veto and fight off delaying legislation, thereby assuring that Maryland workers have a right to earn sick leave.

The effectiveness of UULM-MD’s statewide advocacy work is impossible without the involvement of UUs and other Marylanders.

Email: info@uulmmd.org

Phone: 410-266-8044, ext. 111

Donations are Tax-Deductible 

For more information on all UU groups working for social justice, the UUSC provides the following link showing the UU Social Justice Universe.

Unitarian Universalist Legislative Ministry of Maryland c/o Unitarian Universalist Church of Annapolis, UULM-MD Copyright ©2019. All Rights Reserved.
333 Dubois Road, Annapolis, MD 21401 | 410-266-8044  |  info@uulmmd.org