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ISSA Advocacy Weekly Recap—August 16, 2019

August 16, 2019 ISSA Advocacy Weekly Recap—August 16, 2019

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Welcome to the ISSA Advocacy Weekly Recap! This is ISSA’s regular roundup of the latest public policy related issues impacting the cleaning industry.

EPA Finds Degreaser Could Harm Users
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a Draft Risk Evaluation for 1-Bromopropane on August 9, revealing that the chemical, a common degreaser, may pose unreasonable human and reproductive health risks to workers, occupational non-users, and consumers under certain conditions of use ranging from cleaning electrical equipment to removing furniture stains.

Amazon Launches B2B Brand of Janitorial Products
According to Digital Commerce 360, Amazon has launched AmazonCommercial as its own brand of janitorial and sanitation products. Many online B2B merchants anticipate it entering more private-label categories. Brian Fricano, CEO of SustainableSupply.com, is one of them: “I believe this is just the beginning for Amazon and not just a test, and our team expects Amazon to ramp up their B2B private label offering very quickly over the next two to four quarters.”

Low-Skilled Laborers Have the Most Leverage in the Current Market
In today’s economy, low-skilled labor has surpassed professional labor as having the hardest-to-fill positions. As a result, low-skilled workers are equipped with the bargaining power to demand better wages, benefits, schedules, and work conditions. According to the Economic Policy Institute, they are also quitting more than ever, an indicator of confidence in finding better jobs elsewhere.

New York, Illinois Pass New Workplace Harassment Prevention Laws
On August 9,  Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed Senate Bill 75, a law intended to combat workplace harassment and provide greater protections for employees. The new law mandates statewide sexual harassment prevention training for all employers in Illinois, to be provided at least once a year. It also activates the Hotel and Casino Employee Safety Act, a requirement that “hotels and casinos provide employees who work in isolated spaces a panic button for use if they are sexually harassed or assaulted,” effective July 1, 2020. All other sections will take effect January 1, 2020.

Three days later, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed S.6577/A.8421, which will “bolster protections for victims of sexual harassment in the workplace in New York and lower hurdles for those individuals to seek judicial recourse,” according to Law.com. The majority of this new law’s provisions went into effect immediately.

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