Santa Clara County

San Jose City Council Cracks Down on Wage Theft


San Jose city council wants to crack down on companies that don’t pay their workers. The council approved an ordinance to not do business with companies that have wage judgments against them.

This follows multiple NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit reports that found companies in Santa Clara County owed workers more than $30 million in back wages over the last five years. Statewide, the total is around $274 million.

The Investigative Unit uncovered this dollar amount from wage judgments issued by the courts. However according to a UCLA study from 2011, only 17 percent of those workers who received judgments ever collected a dime. NBC Bay Area found the Labor Commissioner’s Office does not readily track which companies actually pay back the judgments.

San Jose City Councilmember Magdalena Carrasco issued a memo today, citing that UCLA study and asking for a crackdown.

“That’s what we’re asking the city to do, is to make sure that we no longer do business with those businesses that have a judgment against them,” she said. “And then secondly to really look and explore concrete manners in which we can support our employees that have had wages owed to them.”

In the council meeting today, Carrasco asked they research possible legal tools to assist workers in collecting on their judgments

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