Mission statement

The Santa Clara County Wage Theft Coalition actively works to end wage theft, defend workers’ rights, and enforce wage theft judgments.  We hope to accomplish this through policy advocacy, community organizing and outreach, direct action, education, leadership development, and resource coordination.  We work with affected workers and their families, particularly low-wage workers who have been victims of the crime of wage theft.

Meeting time

We meet on the first Monday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at 1030 The Alameda, San Jose, CA 95126 (holidays bumps the meeting to the next Monday). Contact Ruth Silver Taube with your questions 408-621-5678

What is wage theft

Wage theft is the unlawful practice of paying workers less than minimum wage, failing to pay overtime, forcing workers to work off the clock, issuing paychecks that bounce, stealing tips, denying legally required meal and rest breaks, misclassifying workers as independent contractors, and not paying workers at all. Even when workers exercise their rights, they face illegal retaliation. Even when workers win awards, it is hard to collect. In 2012-2013, the Labor Commission awarded $8,000,000 to workers for wage theft violations, but workers could collect only $3,000,000.

Impact of wage theft

Wage theft hurts workers, their families, and the taxpayer. It forces worker to seek County assistance, and it affects public health. It constitutes unfair competition that hurts decent employers. When workers, community organizations, honest employers, legal service workers, and labor unions work together, we can stop wage theft. The Coalition seeks to raise awareness about the problem of wage theft in Santa Clara County through ongoing outreach and education. We support worker-led and community- based strategies that give workers and their allies more tools to prevent wage theft and recover stolen wages. We seek more effective enforcement of existing laws through wage theft ordinances with permit revocation and wage lien provisions.

Coalition members