Helping Working Families | Congressman Tim Ryan
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Helping Working Families

Standing Up for Workers and Working Families

Over the last 20 years, the gap between the wealthy and the middle class has grown significantly.  Families who were once comfortably in the middle class are now struggling to cope with record high prices for food, food and health care – while also providing a decent future for their families and children. A strong economy is the single most important factor in making the American Dream possible. I am proud to support legislation that stands with workers and working families and helps to alleviate the challenges they face.

Raising the Minimum Wage

In the United States, everyone should be able to access basic necessities like food and shelter. However, the current federal minimum wage is too low to adequately support someone working hard to make ends meet. At $7.25 an hour, the minimum wage pays only $15,000 per year, placing a family of three thousands of dollars below the poverty line. For hardworking Americans seeking economic security for themselves and their families, this is simply not good enough.

That is why I support raising the minimum wage to $15.00 an hour. It can be very difficult to raise a family in this economy, and hardworking Americans deserve to be properly compensated. This bill is a step in the right direction.

Closing the Wage Gap

Despite the passage of the Equal Pay Act of 1963, women in the United States are paid on average just 77 cents for every dollar earned by men. In 2009, I was proud to vote for the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and watch President Obama sign it into law. This important legislation clarified that pay discrimination constitutes a violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. As long as workers file their lawsuit within 180 days of receiving a discriminatory paycheck, their charges would still be considered timely.

Further, I am proud to be an original cosponsor of the Paycheck Fairness Act. This bill aims to eliminate the gender wage gap by allowing women to collect punitive as well as compensatory damages for pay discrimination. The Paycheck Fairness Act also offers negotiation skills training to women and girls as well as resources to small businesses to promote pay equity in the workplace. Paycheck fairness is not only good for women, but also good for the economic security of American families.

Improving Family and Medical Leave

In this economic climate, no one should have to worry about losing his or her job due to family obligations or medical necessity. The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 was passed to allow employees to take 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave in a 12-month period to care for a family member, newborn, newly-adopted child, or newly-placed foster child. While this landmark legislation made great strides to help families during difficult and joyous times, we still have a long way to go to improve protected leave.

That is why I am a cosponsor the Family and Medical Insurance Leave (FAMILY) Act, a bill that extends the legacy of the FMLA through 12 weeks of paid leave. I am also a cosponsor of the Healthy Families Act, which permits employees to earn at least one hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours worked. Hardworking Americans should not have to choose between their health or the health of a family member and their paycheck.

Protecting the Workplace Rights of Pregnant Women

Women make up nearly half of the American workforce, yet their job security is often threatened when they become pregnant.  As a husband and father, I am proud to cosponsor the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, a bill making it unlawful to force pregnant women out of the workplace or deny them reasonable accommodations that would enable them to continue providing for their families.  

More on Helping Working Families

September 4, 2015 Press Release

Kent, OH – Congressman Tim Ryan announces $722,044 in National Science Foundation (NSF) to Kent Displays Inc. in Kent, Ohio. These funds will be used to develop eWriter devices for classroom use as a sustainable paper replacement technology and an effective tool for student-teacher interaction. 

“I congratulate Kent Displays Inc. on receiving this award and their commitment to our community by developing this cutting edge technology right here in Portage County,” said Congressman Tim Ryan.

August 11, 2015 Press Release

Congressman Tim Ryan issued the following statement in response to the devaluation of the Chinese yuan:

The action taken yesterday by the Chinese government to devalue their currency makes it even more difficult for American manufacturing and will cost American workers good paying jobs. China has a long history of unfairly undermining American manufacturing, and this action will help them dump their products in the world market.

July 30, 2015 Press Release

Washington, DC – Representatives Tim Ryan (D-OH) and Dave Joyce (R-OH) were joined today by a bipartisan group of 13 Members of Congress to urged the United States Trade Representative Michael Froman to include enforceable currency obligations in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Numerous TPP partners have been identified as currency manipulators, altering exchange rates in their favor to gain advantage over other nations within the agreement, including the United States.

July 28, 2015 Press Release

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan announces $2,058,844 to the International Chemical Workers Union in Akron, Ohio from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences for hazardous waste health and safety training.

July 14, 2015 Press Release

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan today applauded the International Trade Commission’s (ITC) determination that tires manufactured in China and sold in the United States are being subsidized by the Chinese government, leading to the loss of thousands of good-paying jobs for American tire workers.

July 10, 2015 Press Release

Washington, DC – U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH), U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci (R-OH), and U.S. Rep. Pat Tiberi (R-OH)  announced today that they have introduced the Preparing More Welfare Recipients for Work Act (H.R. 2991). This bipartisan legislation was introduced to strengthen the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program (TANF) and would encourage states to engage more recipients in activities that lead to self-sufficiency, as well as simplify the current work participation requirement each state must meet.

July 10, 2015 Press Release

Congressman Tim Ryan issued the following statement on the 2016 Lordstown-built Chevrolet Cruze:

I would like to congratulate the entire General Motors team on the reveal of the All-New 2016 Chevrolet Cruze. It is a sleek design that is impressive and functional in today's car market. The event marks another great day for the people of the Mahoning Valley and we are proud to be the home of the Chevrolet Cruze.

July 1, 2015 Press Release

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan issued the following statement in support of President Obama’s proposals to update overtime rules for American workers:

July 1, 2015 Press Release

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan today released the following statement regarding the expiration of the Export-Import Bank’s charter at midnight tonight:

"Instead of standing with American manufacturing, businesses and workers, Congressional Republicans are allowing the Export-Import Bank’s charter to expire at midnight tonight. Since 2007, the Export-Import Bank has supported 15,300 jobs in Ohio and 1.5 million jobs nationwide.

June 29, 2015 Press Release

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan announces $2.1 million in federal funds to the Western Reserve Port Authority to make updates and improvements to the Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport. This funding was made available through the United States Department of Transportation for the purposes of constructing the taxiway, expand apron, installing guidance signs, and installing runway signs and runway incursion markings.