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CSU Channel Islands students peer into a day in the life of a California Labor Commissioner—learn about labor laws amidst ongoing strikes

CAMARILLO, Calif.— Students at Cal State Channel Islands heard from top California labor officials Thursday afternoon.
The California Labor Commissioner’s office aims to promote economic justice through the enforcement of labor laws. 
With the ongoing strikes throughout various industries, Political Science Professor Tim Allison says there is no better time to have these discussions.
“It's an incredible time for people to understand what happens in the labor world between the United Auto Workers, to the writers strike, to the labor strife all over the country, demands for increased wage and benefits. This is the time for students at this age, in their early age, in their political career, to understand this part of the world,” said CSUCI Political Science Professor Tim Allison.
California State Labor Commissioner Lilia Garcia Brower spoke with students about the work they do— from combating wage theft to protecting workers from retaliation. 
As the proud daughter of immigrants, Garcia Brower says it’s critical for every worker— regardless of legal status—to know their rights.
“We need to reach the working poor. We need to reach families that don't know where our offices are, that don't have the emotional space, the mental space, the economic support to be able to take a day off and go in and figure out what to do about a wage claim issue,” said California State Labor Commissioner Lilia Garcia Brower.
Garcia Brower says wage theft is at the root of many issues. 
“When you look further at, well, why can't you pay your rent? Or Why were you in an unsafe working environment that tends to come back to a wage issue? That unfortunately tends to be that that individual experience, chronic wage theft,” said Garcia Brower.
The Labor Commissioners Office is inviting students to consider a job or internship with them. 
Right now, there are over 300 positions available. 

Article Topic Follows: Santa Barbara - South County

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Mina Wahab

Arab-American producer & reporter with a mission to dig deep in interviews, share authentically, shed light on the issues that matter, and provoke deep thought.


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