Kay warns Chicago Fair Workweek Ordinance would hinder business owners
Republican House candidate Dwight Kay believes the Chicago Fair Workweek Ordinance is nothing more than a political gimmick without much substance.
“I’m hoping it’s just another election year hype effort to make a particular candidate or party look like they are friendlier to workers,” he told the Metro East Sun. “As deceptive as that may be, that’s the only way I can think of where something as ludicrous as this would even remotely make sense.”
The Chicago Fair Workweek is sponsored by Chicago Alderman John Arena, who represents the 45th Ward and is backed by 29 of his colleagues. It would require Chicago employers to pay their employees for any schedule changes made with less than a two-week notice.
The Chicago Tribune reports employers would be on the hook for at least an extra hour of pay to employees affected by any changes and businesses could also face fines of up to $500 for noncompliance for every employee impacted during each pay period. Things like schedule changes that come with less than a 24-hour notice for on-call workers would also result in penalties.
“I’m all for being kind and friendly to workers as anyone,” Kay said. “But at the end of the day, businesses have to be able to run their business. I don’t think we can afford to get to a point where we allow employees to schedule how a business runs itself.”
Kay, who is running against incumbent Rep. Katie Stuart (D-Edwardsville) in Illinois’ 112th District, also said that the proposed rule changes come in addition to a plethora of guidelines already on the books that have drastically changed the landscape for business owners across the area.
“Higher minimum wage, workman compensation rules and just over-regulations in general already make it tough enough to do business in Illinois,” he said. “Businesses already do a lot to accommodate workers. I know because I have, but to be forced to do things like this could lead to a small business having to shut down and the crippling of a larger one. I don’t see the merit to it.”
Illinois’ 112th District includes Bethalto, Caseyville, Fairmont City, Glen Carbon, Maryville, Pontoon Beach, Roxana, Shiloh and Swansea.