California Labor Laws

California Minimum Wage

The minimum wage rate in California has increased in recent years to be among the highest in the nation. California only trails behind Washington and Oregon for the highest minimum wage rate. Each state usually increases its minimum wage rate each year between five to ten cents, with California increasing each year at about fifty cents.

The minimum wage for California stands at eight dollars an hour with Washington and Oregon at eight and a half dollars an hour. However San Francisco has a minimum wage of nine dollars and seventy-nine cents. The federal minimum wage designates that all states’ minimum wages must be above seven dollars and twenty-five cents. California’s minimum wage is made through the Industrial Welfare Commission.

Whenever a state, including California, increases its minimum wage, employers are required to make the change automatically and notify employees of the change. Fines and other charges may be filed if no change occurs.

Internet Regulations

In recent years the Internet has been a negative factor in the working environment for both employees and employers. Some companies require employees to use the Internet, but it can often be abused. Because of this California has searched for ways to control abuse. Abuse can include social network sites, gambling site, and pornography sites. Not only are such sites distracting and keep employees from working, other problems can occur.

Pornography sites can create difficult circumstances outside of Internet abuse. Sexual harassment and uncomfortable environments can arise from these sites and later affect the working environment itself. Saving pornographic images on desktops can lead to sexual discrimination and offense. To file a sexual discrimination suit an individual does not have to be of a specific gender or race. As long as he or she finds the material offense, a case can be legally filed.

Some Californian businesses have installed Internet blocking programs to halt the issue. Other businesses link all their computers to one specific network. Through this capability one specific computer can be pinpointed for access pornography sites or gambling sites. Despite the ability to erase a search history, some information can still remain in the database.

Health and Safety Regulations

All California employees are required to abide by health and safety regulations as stated through the California Occupational Health and Safety Administration. Unlike other states, California has mapped out its own state safety regulations for safety and health that meet the statutes of federal law. California has added to the federal health and safety laws but cannot subtract any laws. California has also installed different inspection programs and investigation programs for these regulations.

Maternity Leave Laws

Rather than use federal laws, California has chosen to use its own laws for how maternity leave is to be handled. Companies and businesses are only required to offer maternity leave if there are more than fifty employees in a seventy-mile a radius. All maternity leave is not paid and can last up to twelve weeks. Employees are to receive their previous job or another at equal pay upon returning to work following leave.

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