On June 24, 2015 the Social Justice Lawyering Clinic at the Stephen and Sandra Sheller Center for Social Justice at Temple University Beasley School of Law released a report titled “Shortchanged: How Wage Theft Harms Pennsylvania’s Workers and Economy.”
The report’s central finding was that wage theft in Pennsylvania harms hundreds of thousands of workers each year, and negatively affects law-abiding businesses and local economies. The report further states that in any given workweek, almost 400,000 Pennsylvania workers experience a minimum wage violation, representing between $19 million and $32 million in lost wages. To combat wage theft, the report recommends, among other things, “strengthening state and local laws, making state agency enforcement more effective, and providing support for low-wage workers.”
Attorney Pete Winebrake was interviewed by the report’s authors and quoted as follows: “[Wage theft] is rampant. Employers claim that they violate the law because they don’t understand it—that the law is confusing. It’s not. They just don’t want to pay people what they are owed—it’s a race to the bottom.”
Read the full report here.