New York, Illinois find success in tackling labor violations



Illinois and New York are national leaders when it comes to curbing worker misclassification. Their efforts were highlighted by a recent review of payroll records on large, publicly financed projects conducted by reporters for McClatchy and ProPublica, an independent nonprofit news outlet, in both states.

While North Carolina and other Southern states have misclassification rates on publicly financed projects approaching nearly 40 percent, the reporters in Illinois and New York combed through payroll records for dozens of projects and found not one instance of a company wrongly listing its employees as independent contractors.

It’s no accident. Illinois and New York have passed hard-nosed laws and formed task forces to take an aggressive tack toward employers who misclassify their workers.

By executive order, New York state created its Joint Enforcement Task Force in 2007, partly in response to a Cornell University study that showed nearly 1 in 10 audited employers in New York were improperly listing workers as independent contractors…

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