Federal Contractors Are Violating Workers’ Rights and Harming the U.S. Government
Introduction and summary
The federal government spends $500 billion every year contracting out public work that ranges from the design and manufacture of sophisticated weapons systems to janitorial and maintenance operations. Despite protections to ensure that federal contractors pay decent wages, provide safe workplaces, and respect workers’ rights on the job, the government frequently contracts with companies with long records of workplace violations. New analysis from the Center for American Progress Action Fund finds that contracting with companies that break workplace laws also frequently results in poor performance of federal contracts and waste of public resources. Conversely, policy reforms that increase companies’ compliance with worker protection laws may result in improved contract performance and support good value for public investments.
Numerous government studies have found that federal contractors are frequently among the worst violators of federal workplace laws but face few consequences. The Trump administration exacerbated these problems with actions that weakened federal contract worker protections and oversight.
The above excerpt was originally published in the Center for American Progress Action Fund. Click here to view the full report.
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Senior Director, Employment Policy