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

March 10, 2021 Press Release

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) made the following statement today as former Congresswoman Marcia L. Fudge is confirmed by the U.S. Senate as the Secretary for Housing and Urban Development. She is expected to be sworn in by President Biden later this evening. 

March 9, 2021 Press Release

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) today voted for the Protecting Right to Organize (PRO) Act, a significant worker-rights bill that will enhance the power of workers to organize and collectively bargain for better wages, benefits, and working conditions. The PRO Act will guard union elections from employer interference, require employers to negotiate with newly elected unions, ensure employees can’t be misclassified as supervisors or independent contractors, invalidate state “right-to-work-for-less” laws, and stiffen penalties for violations of workers’ rights.

February 27, 2021 Press Release

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) last night voted in support of the American Rescue Plan Act, which includes $11 Billion for the State of Ohio and nearly $300 million for counties in the 13th District. Additionally, the American Rescue Plan Act allocated nearly $555 million for school districts in Northeast Ohio, including an estimated $119M for Akron City Schools, $36M for Warren City Schools, and over $70M for Youngstown City Schools.

February 17, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tim Ryan today joined 77 of his Democratic Colleagues in calling on President Biden to fill three vacant seats on the United States Postal Service Board of Governors as soon as possible.

February 16, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tim Ryan today joined the Biden Administration in announcing the extension of COVID-19 forbearance and foreclosure protections for homeowners. The actions taken by the President will extend the foreclosure moratorium for homeowners through June 30, 2021; extend the mortgage payment forbearance enrollment window until June 30, 2021; and provide up to six months of additional mortgage payment forbearance, in three-month increments, for borrowers who entered forbearance on or before June 30, 2020.

February 12, 2021 Press Release

Niles, OH – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) today responded to the Howmet and United Steelworkers (USW) agreement to maintain melt operations and extend the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) contract. Ryan has been in continuous contact with the USW and Howmet during talks to downsize the local plant operations and potentially shutter the melt furnace due to lagging business activity during the COVID-19 pandemic.

February 10, 2021 Press Release

Niles, OH – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) is fighting for United Steel Workers and the Howmet factory in Niles as Howmet leadership negotiates with union leadership to downsize the local plant due to lagging business during the COVID-19 pandemic. In a letter to the president of Howmet Structure and Wheel Systems, Ryan urged Howmet to consider other options rather than closing down the melt operation. He pledged to help identify resources and incentives to help keep the factory open and keep Steel Workers employed.

February 8, 2021 Press Release

Youngstown, Ohio -- Today, Representative Tim Ryan (OH-13) joined Representatives Lauren Underwood (IL-14) and Alma Adams (NC-12), Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ), and members of the Black Maternal Health Caucus to unveil a historic legislative package to address the United States’ urgent maternal health crisis. Ryan is a member of the Black Maternal Health Caucus. 

February 5, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) is announcing that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is now allowing eligible educators to deduct unreimbursed expenses for COVID-19 protective items to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the classroom. The change was enacted as part of the Fiscal Year 2021 Omnibus Appropriations Act passed in December of 2019, which Ryan supported.

February 1, 2021 Press Release

Niles, Ohio – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) urges Governor Mike DeWine to make efforts to improve vaccine access for Black communities across Ohio. According to the COVID-19 dashboard tracking the disbursement of vaccines, Black Ohioans make up less than 5% of those who have received a vaccine in Ohio, but Black Ohioans have made up 20% of the state’s hospitalizations and 12% of