Center for American Progress

RELEASE: The Emerging Trend of City and State Governments Supporting Employee Ownership and Profit-Sharing
Press Release

RELEASE: The Emerging Trend of City and State Governments Supporting Employee Ownership and Profit-Sharing

Washington, D.C. — Employee ownership and broad-based profit-sharing agreements, in which workers are rewarded based on a company’s collective performance, have been shown to boost wages, address racial and gender wealth disparities, and contribute to thriving local economies. Now a growing number of city and state governments—including North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Nebraska, Berkeley, California, and Newark, New Jersey—are developing policies to support employee ownership and profit-sharing programs in their jurisdictions.

While government programs to support broad-based profit-sharing and employee ownership are increasingly prevalent, there are still millions of workers nationwide who could benefit from such programs. A new report from the Center for American Progress provides a roadmap for cities and states looking to support employee ownership and profit-sharing in their communities. The key recommendations include:

  • Establish an office of employee ownership and broad-based profit-sharing to provide outreach and technical assistance to private sector businesses and workers and serve to improve government knowledge and support for all types of broad-based sharing.
  • Ensure employee-owned firms can access existing government loan programs and use public funding to help facilitate ownership conversions.
  • Evaluate government contractors on whether they provide good jobs and encourage them to share ownership and profits with their workers.
  • Require government-supported tech startups to share equity, profits, or ownership with their workers.

“Employee ownership and broad-based profit-sharing have unequivocal benefits for participating workers and their communities,” said Karla Walter, senior director of Employment Policy at the Center for American Progress and author of the report. “Despite the clear benefits of these programs, more than half of American workers don’t benefit from sharing models. The good news is that there is a clear role that cities and states can play in promoting profit-sharing and employee ownership and subsequently boosting the wealth of their residents while creating more stable and robust economies.”

Please click here to read: “Building Workers’ Wealth in Cities and States” by Karla Walter

For more information or to speak to an expert, contact Julia Cusick at jcusick@americanprogress.org or 202.495.3682.