The middle class is the great engine of the American economy, but today that engine is sputtering.
Too many workers are toiling in jobs that don't pay enough to support families, and too many can't find work at all. Meanwhile, the jobs that will grow the most in the next decade are expected to be low-wage and stripped of benefits. We're on an unsustainable course and it's time for U-turn.
Offering a way forward, more than a dozen leading national organizations that research the economy, advocate for good jobs and represent workers have come together to propose 10 steps to build the middle class.
The guiding principles of the roadmap are values we all share: that work lies at the center of a robust and sustainable economy; that all work has dignity; and that through work, all of us should be able to support our families, educate our children and enjoy our retirements.
After the dust settles from the election, this new guide is something every lawmaker should take seriously as we continue to rebuild the economy. Here's a quick overview of the 10 steps:
1. MAKE EVERY JOB A GOOD JOB.
2. FIX THE MINIMUM WAGE.
3. SAVE GOOD PUBLIC AND PRIVATE JOBS.
4. ENSURE HEALTH AND RETIREMENT SECURITY.
5. UPHOLD THE FREEDOM TO JOIN A UNION.
6. MAKE THE MODERN WORKPLACE PRO-FAMILY.
7. STOP WAGE THEFT.
8. REQUIRE THAT YOUR BOSS BE YOUR EMPLOYER.
9. GIVE UNEMPLOYED JOB-SEEKERS A REAL, FRESH START.
10. TOUGHEN LAWS PROTECTING WORKER SAFETY AND HEALTH.
Some might think the jobs being created in today's economy are being shaped by some kind of invisible hand - that there is little we can do to change that. But a strong middle class doesn't happen by accident.
Rebuilding the great American middle class in the 21st century will once again require deliberate action by the American people, through our government and by businesses that understand that our mutual long-term prosperity depends on treating workers everywhere with dignity and giving them the means to a decent standard of living. It will mean taking a U-turn from the policies of the past 30 years, which have squeezed workers in the pursuit of short-term profits, slowly hollowing out the middle class on which our long-term prosperity is built.
Together, we can set a course that will honor work, help rebuild the middle class and drive us forward to a more powerful, sustainable economy.
Read more HERE. We need good jobs for America now.