Reflection Paper 2-1 - Essay Example

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labor law. Major reforms should be introduced in the labor law to modernize the existing wage laws, namely the 1931 Davis-Bacon Act for construction, the 1936 Walsh-Healy Act for goods and the 1965 Service Contract…
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Reflection Paper 2-1
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Reforms in U.S. Labor Law Reforms in U.S. Labor Law Yes, it is time to introduce much needed reforms in the U.S. labor law. Major reforms should be introduced in the labor law to modernize the existing wage laws, namely the 1931 Davis-Bacon Act for construction, the 1936 Walsh-Healy Act for goods and the 1965 Service Contract Act for services (Sonn & Bernhardt, 2010). The employers should pay decent wages and give additional benefits to its employees and the Federal government should pave the way for the implementation of these necessary changes. If the Obama administration wants to improve the economy, it should strive at initiating reforms toward an increase in wages for the federal contractors so that it is within industry standards.
The intellectual human resource management school of thought that underlies the above recommended change is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (Cherry, n.d.). If the employees’ lower level needs mentioned in Maslow’s hierarchy which includes job security/compensation are not satisfied, the employees cannot be motivated to work well. If they do not do their best in their jobs, they cannot be assets to society; therefore, will not be able to contribute to the improvement of the economy.
Another reform that must be instituted is the passing into law of the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) which “would enable working people to bargain for better benefits, wages and working conditions by restoring workers’ freedom to choose for themselves whether to join a union” (AFL-CIO, 2011). The AFL-CIO goes on further to say that the EFCA will allow employees to enter into a collective bargaining agreement without any hindrances (2011). Moreover, it can guarantee that these employees can have a contract. With the passing of the EFCA the employees may be allowed “to form unions by signing cards authorizing union representation” (AFL-CIO, 2011). If the EFCA is passed, it would be easier to form unions without the usual harassment from management. Further, it will provide for more rigid penalties for companies who violate the law of the right of the workers to organize.
The EFCA reform is also in line with Maslow’s hierarchy of needs in that it will satisfy both the security and social needs of a person. Employees always seek for better wages and better working conditions to meet his physiological and security needs. Being part of a union satisfies the social needs of the workers. The EFCA will reinforce the satisfaction of these needs; thus, it is important that this reform be implemented.
Aside from the reforms stated above, it is suggested that stronger labor laws be introduced to discourage unfair practices of companies who wish to cut on labor costs. This would include the overall improvement of the workplace environment, that is, an increase in minimum wage, provision for health and safety standards, expansion of overtime coverage and support for the right of workers to organize (Sonn & Bernhardt, 2010). This suggested reform is in line with Henri Fayol’s 14 Principles of Management (Marino, n.d.). It concurs with Fayol’s seventh principle of remuneration, which states that the salary is an important motivator and the eleventh principle of equity, which maintains that a company should be just and kind in treating its employees.
The above reforms suggested for the U.S. labor law will lead to the improvement of the welfare of the American labor force. A positive development of the workers’ well-being will eventually redound to the benefit of the employers. Ultimately, it is the U.S. economy which will gain from these reforms.
AFL-CIO. (2011). Employee Free Choice Act. Retrieved September 28, 2011, from American Federation of Labor-Congress of International Organizations Web site:
Cherry, K. (n.d.). Hierarchy of needs. Retrieved September 28, 2011, from Web site:
Marino, V. (n.d.). 14 Principles of management (Henri Fayol). Retrieved September 28, 2011, from Web site:
Sonn, P. K., & Bernhardt, A. (2010). Government paves the way: A decent-work agenda for the Obama administration. Berkeley Journal of Employment & Labor Law , 31 (2), 489-494. Read More
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