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New Laws Expand Worker Protections & Benefits


A package of legislation signed by Governor Kathy Hochul aims to protect and expand benefits for New York workers.

Under the new legislation, employers are prohibited from disciplining employees who opt out of participating in meetings concerning the employer’s political or religious views.

Wage theft is now considered a form of larceny, allowing for stronger penalties against employers.

Legislation was also signed to increase the minimum benefits for worker’s compensation. Permanent or temporary partial disability is to be increased to $275 in 2024, then to $325 in 2025, and further increased to 1/5 of the state average weekly wage in 2026.

“This legislation will help to ensure that all New Yorkers receive the benefits and protections that allow them to work with dignity,” Governor Hochul said. “My administration is committed to making our state the most worker-friendly state in the nation, and I thank the bill sponsors for their partnership in our mission to establish the strongest and most robust protections right here in New York.”

New York Attorney General Letitia James said, “Everyone deserves a safe workplace where they are treated with dignity and respect. The legislation being enacted today will help protect workers across the state, particularly immigrants and other vulnerable New Yorkers who are often the likeliest victims of employer abuses like wage theft and discrimination. From now on, prosecutors will have the tools they need to stop perpetrators of wage theft who steal billions of dollars from New Yorkers every year. I want to thank Governor Hochul for enacting these important measures, Assemblymember Cruz, Senator Breslin, and all the other elected officials for their leadership in sponsoring this legislation, and our partners in organized labor for tirelessly championing these issues.”



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