BossFeed Briefing for July 31, 2017. Last week, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos briefly passed Microsoft's Bill Gates as the richest person in the world; both live in Washington so neither pays state income tax. Last Thursday, another variation on a healthcare repeal failed to get majority support in the U.S. Senate, though it may yet be born again. Tomorrow is Emancipation Day in much of the Caribbean, marking the day in 1834 when slavery was (mostly) abolished in (most of) the British Empire. It’s also the first day of Happiness Happens Month, and primary election day in Washington State.
Three things to know this week:
Seattle City Councilmember Lisa Herbold and Mayor Ed Murray announced the city will soon eliminate the sub-minimum wage for disabled workers. Seattle’s $15 law had mirrored state law in allowing for this exemption, which disability rights leaders forcefully argued was discriminatory and unacceptable.
The Trump Administration has filed a court brief arguing that LGBTQ workers are not covered by workplace anti-discrimination laws. This reverses 2012 & 2015 findings by the relevant federal agencies that existing laws barring sex discrimination also apply to LGBTQ workers.
A U.S. District Judge last week ruled that Yakima County could not enforce an “immigration hold” on someone detained in a county jail, finding the procedure to be in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The federal government pays Yakima County $84 for each inmate jailed at ICE’s request.
Two things to ask:
What do you think happens next in this movie? A company which specializes in making software for corporate break rooms is implanting fifty employees with microchips — all volunteers, they insist. The subjects will then be able to buy office snacks via the implant instead of having to go to the bother of taking a credit card out of their pocket.
Ever wanted to know what the opposite of philanthropy would be? The managing director of major tech investment company Madrona Venture Group has started up a new nonprofit, explaining that “I believe there are times when you need to serve your community.” The mission of the tax-deductible 501c3 group is to mount a court challenge against Seattle’s new 2.25% income tax on income above $250,000.
And one thing that’s worth a closer look:
In some areas, as many as one in four applicants for some jobs are being rejected due to drug test results, the NY Times reports. It’s always revealing and more than a little trippy to read these kinds of pieces where employers express anguish about their professed inability to solve problems that they mostly created themselves. Because much as with the employers who complain about not having enough people to fill open jobs but don’t want to pay enough money to attract more workers, a large part of the issue here is self-inflicted. Drug screenings are known to be unreliable, yet many employers continue to enforce a blanket bar on any job applicant who has a positive test result at any time, including for marijuana, including in places where it’s legal for medical or recreational use.
Read this far?
Consider yourself briefed, boss.
The BossFeed Briefing is our weekly look at the world of work, wages, and inequality.