Oregon lawmakers are considering a measure that would give hourly employees more certainty in their work schedules.
The measure would require employers to pay their employees for at least four hours if their shift is canceled or changed less than 24 hours in advance.
Supporters of the measure held a press conference at the Capitol Building in Salem on Thursday. Restaurant worker Hali Anderson said the bill would provide more personal stability.
“Management will often send us home after just one or two hours of work,” she said. “We are required to be available for on-call shifts, which bar the opportunity to pursue other jobs or education, but which provide no guarantee of hours.”
The bill is scheduled for a public hearing next Monday in the Senate Workforce Committee.
Business groups opposed a similar measure in 2015 that failed to pass. But lawmakers did approve a ban on local governments enacting predictive scheduling laws. That ban is scheduled to expire at the close of the 2017 legislative session.
So, if lawmakers don’t act, cities and counties could enact their own versions of the bill.
Greg Astley, the director of Government Affairs for the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association, said his group would like that preemption continued indefinitely. Astley said restaurant owners need the flexibility to make staffing decisions without being penalized.
Editor’s Note: This story has been updated to reflect the correct day of the public hearing.