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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Vietnam's Labor Rights Regime: An Assessment
Report regarding Vietnam that gives context to a bilateral trade agreement under consideration by the U.S. Congress. From the summary: "This report details Vietnam's law and policy in six areas of labor rights: the right of association/collective bargaining; forced labor; child labor; health and safety; wages, hours and welfare benefits; and discrimination. This report also provides international context by contrasting the Vietnamese and Chinese labor rights regimes." Includes an appendix of Vietnamese labor laws (p. 37) digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs3540/
Job Growth During the Recovery
This report analyzes employment data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics from December 2007 to September 2012, including characteristics of job loss and gain within several industries. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc122202/
Whistleblower Protections Under Federal Law: An Overview
This report provides an overview of key aspects of the 18 selected federal statutes applicable to individuals in certain private-sector industries. It focuses on the protections provided to employees who believe they have been subject to retaliation, rather than on how or where alleged misconduct should be disclosed. In addition, the report also includes an overview of the Whistleblower Protection Act. While state law may also provide whistleblower protections for employees, this report focuses only on the aforementioned federal statutory provisions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc122254/
Social Security: Coverage of Household Workers - A Fact Sheet
On October 22, 1994, President Clinton signed legislation (P.L. 103-387) that changes social security coverage of household workers. The new law changed the threshold to a yearly amount and raised it (to $1,000 in 1994, indexed thereafter to average wage growth-it became $1,100 in 1998, 1,200 in 2000, and 1,300 in 2001). It remains at $1,300 in 2002. In addition, the new law exempted most domestic workers under age 18, and provided that Social Security and unemployment taxes will be reported on the employer's annual federal tax return. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26035/
Numerical Limits on Employment-Based Immigration: Analysis of the Per-Country Ceilings
The report opens with brief explanations of the employment-based preference categories and the per-country ceilings governing annual admissions of LPRs. The focus is on the major employment-based preference categories. The report continues with a statistical analysis of the pending caseload of approved employment-based LPR petitions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc83988/
Social Security: Raising the Retirement Age Background and Issues
The Social Security "full retirement age" will gradually rise from 65 to 67 beginning with people who attain age 62 in 2000 (i.e., those born in 1938). Early retirement benefits will still be available beginning at age 62, but at lower levels. To help solve Social Security's long-range financing problems, it has been proposed that these ages be raised further. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26050/
Unauthorized Aliens Residing in the United States: Estimates Since 1986
This report discusses a rise in the unauthorized resident ("illegal") alien population from 1986 to 2010. It looks at reasons that illegal aliens stay resort to breaking the law and how illegal aliens affect the workforce in certain industries. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc94099/
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act: Executive Compensation
This report discusses the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (H.R. 4173), which was implemented as part of financial regulatory reform initiatives undertaken by Congress in light of the recent global economic crisis. The legislation focuses on executive compensation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc29597/
Regulating Private Pensions: A Brief Summary of ERISA
This report briefly discusses the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), and how it protects the interests of participants and beneficiaries in private-sector employee benefit plans. ERISA covers a number of fringe benefits provided by employers, but most of its provisions deal with pension plans. Pension plans sponsored by the federal, state, and local governments, or by churches generally are exempt from ERISA. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc29496/
The Workforce Investment Act and the One-Stop Delivery System
This report focuses on Titles I and II of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA), both of which authorize programs to provide job search, education, and training activities for individuals seeking to gain or improve their employment prospects. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462079/
Unauthorized Aliens Residing in the United States: Estimates Since 1986
This report presents data estimating since 1986 the number of unauthorized aliens who have been living in the United States. There have been a variety of estimates of the unauthorized resident alien population over this period, sometimes with substantially different results. This report is limited to analyses of the Current Population Survey (CPS) conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor Statistics and of the American Community Survey (ACS) conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau so that there are basic standards of comparison over time. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462232/
Overview of Labor Enforcement Issues in Free Trade Agreements
This report identifies two types of labor enforcement issues related to Free Trade Agreements approved by Congress: (1) those that relate to the FTA provisions themselves, including their definitions and their enforceability, and (2) those that relate to executive branch responsibilities, such as resource availability and determining dispute settlement case priorities. This report does not address other labor issues in the various free trade agreements, including cooperative consultation provisions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463201/
Bangladesh Apparel Factory Collapse: Background in Brief
This report provides an overview of the recent tragedy in Bangladesh and the Bangladesh economic environment and culture. It also notes the responses to the tragedy, to date, from Congress, the Administration, the ILO, the Bangladesh government, and the private sector. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463476/
Trafficking in Persons in Latin America and the Caribbean
This report looks at instances of trafficking in persons (TIP) in Latin America. It looks at current legislation in the U.S. to combat this problem. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc490924/
State and Local Restrictions on Employing, Renting Property to, or Providing Services for Unauthorized Aliens: Legal Issues and Recent Judicial Developments
This report discusses the constitutional issues raised by state and local laws intended to deter the presence of unauthorized aliens by limiting their access to housing, employment, and public benefits, as well as the implications that federal civil rights statutes might have for the implementation and enforcement of these laws. It also discusses recent federal court cases addressing the constitutionality of such measures. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc490883/
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act: Executive Compensation
This report discusses the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (H.R. 4173), which was implemented as part of financial regulatory reform initiatives undertaken by Congress in light of the recent global economic crisis. The legislation focuses on executive compensation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc490937/
Worker Safety in the Construction Industry: The Crane and Derrick Standard
This report first examines the incidence of fatal and nonfatal on-the-job injuries in the private sector. It next analyzes the causes of fatalities in the construction industry and the involvement of cranes in those deaths. The report then addresses the status of a proposed rule to update the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) crane and derrick standard. It closes with an overview of jurisdictions having safety regulations for cranes more stringent, in whole or part, than the existing federal standard. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463095/
Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issues for Congress
This report focuses on human trafficking both internationally and within the United States. The report begins with an overview of human trafficking including a discussion of the definition of human trafficking, the scope of the problem globally, and an examination of the victims. It follows with an analysis of global antitrafficking efforts by the United States and the international community. The report then focuses on trafficking into and within the United States, examining relief for trafficking victims in the United States and discussing U.S. law enforcement efforts to combat domestic trafficking. The report concludes with an overview of antitrafficking legislation in the 110th Congress, and an analysis of policy issues related to human trafficking. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463090/
Unauthorized Aliens Residing in the United States: Estimates Since 1986
This report presents data estimating since 1986 the number of unauthorized aliens who have been living in the United States. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462380/
Older Workers: Employment and Retirement Trends
This report begins by describing the change in the age distribution of the U.S. population that will occur between 2005 and 2025 and by summarizing the historical data on the labor force participation of older workers. This discussion is followed by an analysis of data from the Census Bureau's Current Population Survey on employment and receipt of pension income among persons age 55 and older. Employment trends among older workers are then discussed in the context of data from the Social Security Administration on the proportion of workers who claim retired-worker benefits before the full retirement age (65 years and 10 months for people who turn 65 in 2008). The final section of the report discusses "phased retirement," a process that combines reduced hours of work with receipt of pension income. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463173/
Automatic Cost of Living Adjustments: Some Economic and Practical Considerations
This report looks at how automatic cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) influence the budget and identifies major programs that have indexing provisions. It also explains what price indexes attempt to measure and discusses some of their weaknesses. Finally, it points out some practical things to keep in mind when establishing an indexing provision. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503634/
The Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA): A Summary
This report summarizes the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) and the major regulatory programs that mandate reporting by industrial facilities of releases of hazardous chemicals to the environment, as well as local planning to respond in the event of significant, accidental releases. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503549/
Trafficking in Persons in Latin America and the Caribbean
This report looks at instances of trafficking in persons (TIP) in Latin America. It looks at current legislation in the U.S. to combat this problem. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc505495/
Fruits, Vegetables, and Other Specialty Crops: A Primer on Government Programs
No Description digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9119/
Proposed Colombia Free Trade Agreement: Labor Issues
This report examines three labor issues and arguments related to the pending U.S.-Colombia free trade agreement (CFTA): violence against trade unionists; impunity (accountability for or punishment of the perpetrators); and worker rights protections for Colombians. This report addresses this issue at length, including the arguments for and against the agreement, as well as general U.S.-Colombia economic relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463414/
The Proposed U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement
This report examines three labor issues and arguments related to the pending U.S.-Colombia free trade agreement (CFTA; H.R. 5724 and S. 2830): violence against trade unionists; impunity (accountability for or punishment of the perpetrators); and worker rights protections for Colombians. The congressional debate surrounding the agreement has mostly centered on the violence issues in Colombia. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc31485/
DR-CAFTA Labor Rights Issues
The U.S.-Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (DRCAFTA) is the eighth free trade agreement to include labor protections.1 Labor concerns tend to focus on three main questions: (1) How strong are labor laws in DRCAFTA countries?2 (2) Are those labor laws being adequately enforced? and (3) Does DR- CAFTA comply with the principal negotiating objectives for trade agreements outlined in the Trade Act of 2002? digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7663/
Proposed Colombia Free Trade Agreement: Labor Issues
This report examines three labor issues and arguments related to the pending U.S.-Colombia free trade agreement (CFTA): violence against trade unionists; impunity (accountability for or punishment of the perpetrators); and worker rights protections for Colombians. This report addresses this issue at length, including the arguments for and against the agreement, as well as general U.S.-Colombia economic relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26296/
The Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act (LHWCA): Overview of Workers' Compensation for Certain Private- Sector Maritime Workers
This report discusses the Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act (LHWCA), a federal workers' compensation program that covers certain private-sector maritime workers. More than $980 million in LHWCA benefits are paid each year. The LHWCA is administered by the Department of Labor (DOL) and all benefit costs are paid by employers and their insurance carriers. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc31386/
Concurrent Receipt: Background and Issues for Congress
"Concurrent Receipt" refers to the simultaneous receipt of two types of monetary benefits: military retired pay and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) disability compensation. This report addresses the two primary components of the concurrent receipt program: Combat-Related Special Compensation (CRSC) and Concurrent Retirement and Disability Payments (CRDP). It reviews the possible legislative expansion of the program to additional populations and provide several potential options for Congress to consider. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc31338/
Unemployment Compensation (Insurance) and Military Service
This report discusses Unemployment Compensation for Ex-Servicemembers (UCX), which provides income support while former active duty military personnel or reservists released from active duty search for work. The report addresses funding for this service, who is entitled to UCX benefits, and Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC08) and the Extended Benefits (EB) payments, which a servicemember receives when regular unemployment benefits are exhausted. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc31493/
Foreign Science and Engineering Presence in U.S. Institutions and the Labor Force
The increased presence of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs and in the scientific workforce has been and continues to be of concern to some in the scientific community. Enrollment of U.S. citizens in graduate science and engineering programs has not kept pace with that of foreign students in those programs. In addition to the number of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs, a significant number of university faculty in the scientific disciplines are foreign, and foreign doctorates are employed in large numbers by industry. This report explains this issue in detail, as well as probable causes of said incongruity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc29515/
Foreign Science and Engineering Presence in U.S. Institutions and the Labor Force
The increased presence of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs and in the scientific workforce has been and continues to be of concern to some in the scientific community. Enrollment of U.S. citizens in graduate science and engineering programs has not kept pace with that of foreign students in those programs. In addition to the number of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs, a significant number of university faculty in the scientific disciplines are foreign, and foreign doctorates are employed in large numbers by industry. This report explains this issue in detail, as well as probable causes of said incongruity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc29516/
Federal Employees: Pay and Pension Increases Since 1969
Under the terms of the Federal Employees' Pay Comparability Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-509), pay for civilian federal employees is adjusted each year to keep the salaries of federal workers competitive with comparable occupations in the private sector. The annual increases in federal employee pay are based on changes in the cash compensation paid to workers in the private sector, as measured by the ECI. Under certain circumstances, the President may limit the annual increase in federal pay by executive order. Federal law also requires Social Security benefits and the pensions paid to retired federal employees to be adjusted each year. The COLAs for both Social Security and civil service pensions are based on the rate of inflation as measured by the CPI. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc29484/
Military Base Closures: Socioeconomic Impacts
The most recent Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Commission submitted its final report to the Administration on September 8, 2005. Implementation of the BRAC round was officially completed on September 15, 2011. In the report, the commission rejected 13 of the initial Department of Defense recommendations, significantly modified the recommendations for 13 other installations, and approved 22 major closures. Early planning and decisive leadership from officials are important factors in addressing local socioeconomic impacts from base realignment and closing. Drawing from existing studies, this report assesses the potential community impacts and proposals for minimizing those impacts. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc87382/
Small Business Administration HUBZone Program
This report examines arguments both for and against targeting assistance to geographic areas with specified characteristics, such as low income, high poverty, or high unemployment, as opposed to providing assistance to people or businesses with specified characteristics. It then assesses the arguments both for and against the continuation of the HUBZone program digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc272006/
Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issues for Congress
Trafficking in persons (TIP) for the purposes of exploitation is believed to be one of the most prolific areas of international criminal activity and is of significant concern to the United States and the international community. This report discusses the global and ongoing problem of TIP in detail, as well as anti-TIP programs and U.S. and international efforts to combat TIP. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc87335/
Trafficking in Persons: International Dimensions and Foreign Policy Issues for Congress
This report explores current foreign policy issues confronting U.S. efforts to combat human trafficking, the interrelationship among existing polices, and the historical and current role of Congress in such efforts. The 112th Congress has introduced and taken action on several bills related to human trafficking. Given recent challenges in balancing budget priorities, the 112th Congress may choose to consider certain aspects of this issue further, including the effectiveness of international anti-trafficking projects, interagency coordination mechanisms, and the monitoring and enforcement of anti-trafficking regulations, particularly as they relate to the activities of U.S. government contractors and subcontractors operating overseas. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc85409/
Foreign Science and Engineering Presence in U.S. Institutions and the Labor Force
No Description digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10169/
Military Base Closures: Socioeconomic Impacts
This report explores the potential economic impact of military closures on communities, especially rural communities, which are more heavily affected by such closures and suffer from slower economic recovery times in such instances. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc228140/
Trafficking in Persons: International Dimensions and Foreign Policy Issues for Congress
Report that explores current foreign policy issues regarding U.S. efforts to combat human trafficking, the interrelationship among existing polices, and the historical and current role of Congress in such efforts. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc227756/
Sex Trafficking of Children in the United States: Overview and Issues for Congress
Report concerning Congressional attention on the domestic sex trafficking of children. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc227723/
OSHA Reform: "Partnership" with Employers
No Description digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs1851/
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Coverage of Contagious Diseases
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), provides broad nondiscrimination protection for individuals with disabilities in employment public services, public accommodations and services operated by private entities, transportation, and telecommunication. This report briefly discusses the Americans with Disabilities Act's statutory provisions relating to contagious diseases and relevant judicial interpretations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10648/
Labor-Management Relations and the Federal Aviation Administration: Background and Current Legislative Issues
This report discusses labor-management relations at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the 2006 implementation of a new labor contract on air traffic controllers. The FAA's ability to implement the new contract with its controllers was arguably supported by a mediation procedure prescribed by federal law. This report provides background information on the mediation procedure, discusses litigation involving the FAA and two labor organizations, and examines legislative attempts to amend the existing system. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10723/
Government Spending on Health Care Benefits and Programs: A Data Brief
In a country where health spending accounts for more than 16% of gross domestic product (GDP), health care costs and spending are often described as a problem for consumers and their families; for employers that provide (or seek to provide) health benefits; and for government, which finances a mix of health care services, health research and training, and health safety programs. To describe government spending on health care benefits and programs, this report presents data from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10758/
Tax Treatment of Employer Educational Assistance for the Benefit of Employees
Educational assistance offered by employers to their employees may be exempt from federal income tax under Section 127 and Section 132 of the Internal Revenue Code. Section 127 is the employer educational assistance exclusion; Section 132, the fringe benefit exclusion for working condition benefits (e.g., job-related eduction) among other benefits. Congress established the two tax provisions well before it enacted to her higher education tax benefits meant to assist taxpayers, their spouses, and dependents -- regardless of employment status -- pay current educational expenses incurred while obtaining postsecondary degrees and undertaking lifelong learning. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10765/
Coal Excise Tax Refunds: United States v. Clintwood Elkhorn Mining Co.
In 1998, a U.S. district court held that the imposition of the coal excise tax, or black lung excise tax, on coal destined for export was unconstitutional. The process of refunding the tax has been controversial. This is because some coal producers and exporters have attempted to bypass the limitations in the Internal Revenue Code's refund scheme for bringing suit under the Export Clause in the Court of Federal Claims, seeking damages from the United States in the amount of coal excise taxes paid. The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals held the court had jurisdiction under the Tucker Act to hear the suits and allowed them as an alternative to the Code's refund process. However, in a 2008 decision, United States v. Clintwood Elkhorn Mining Co., the Supreme Court unanimously held that taxpayers must comply with the Code's administrative refund process before bringing suit. Meanwhile, H.R. 1762 and S. 373 would provide an alternative method for taxpayers to receive coal excise tax refunds. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10743/
Foreign Science and Engineering Presence in U.S. Institutions and the Labor Force
The increased presence of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs and in the scientific workforce has been and continues to be of concern to some in the scientific community. Enrollment of U.S. citizens in graduate science and engineering programs has not kept pace with that of foreign students in those programs. In addition to the number of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs, a significant number of university faculty in the scientific disciplines are foreign, and foreign doctorates are employed in large numbers by industry. This report explains this issue in detail, as well as probable causes of said incongruity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10524/
Military Base Closures: Socioeconomic Impacts
The most recent Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Commission submitted its final report to the Administration on September 8, 2005. In the report, the commission rejected 13 of the initial Department of Defense recommendations, significantly modified the recommendations for 13 other installations, and approved 22 major closures. The loss of related jobs, and efforts to replace them and to implement a viable base reuse plan, can pose significant challenges for affected communities. This report explores the potential economic impact of military closures on communities, especially rural communities, which are more heavily affected by such closures and suffer from slower economic recovery times in such instances. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10639/