Legislation Encouraging More Strikes Deserves Governor’s Veto

Legislation Would Give Unemployment to Striking Workers After Only One Week

After passing both the State Senate and Assembly in the 2019-2020 legislative session, a piece of legislation is awaiting Governor Cuomo’s approval to allow striking workers to receive unemployment benefits after only seven days. Simply put, this legislation will encourage strikes and drive up already high labor costs.

Under current law, striking workers are eligible for unemployment benefits after seven weeks. New York is one of only three states in the nation that provides this benefit to striking workers. In making the change from seven weeks to seven days, this legislation equates the experience of a worker who has lost their job to a striking worker choosing to engage in a labor dispute.

Bad for Business

This legislation represents yet another significant burden imposed on businesses in New York by forcing employers to bear the cost of such strikes through rising unemployment insurance premiums. Unemployment benefits are fully funded by New York employers through more than $2 billion in annual taxes- taxes that were raised to pay off a $3 billion unemployment insurance fund deficit in 2013.

Expanding these benefits effectively shifts the cost of strikes to employers and incentivizes more union strikes with increased durations. The cost of doing business in New York is already too high. Adding these increased costs to the existing burdensome taxes and regulations will discourage businesses from locating or reinvesting in New York State.

Join the Fight

The Partnership has actively opposed this legislation and needs your help to urge Governor Cuomo to issue a veto when it reaches his desk. Through our easy-to-use online advocacy tool, with a few clicks you can send a pre-written message asking Governor Cuomo to stand with the hard-working business owners in New York State and veto this legislation.

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Maddilyn Genovese Headshot

About Maddilyn Genovese

Manager, Government Affairs & Economic Development