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Jimenez / Workers Center In Houston

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Maria Jiménez: To having a delegation of religious folks to try to get the boss to fork up the money, which sometimes works- sometimes does not. Once a year there are justice buses that protest some of the some of the worst cases. But in general I think the worker center has- I do not know the latest statistics- but probably has been able to recuperate over a million dollars worth of wages for the workers. Personally, I would like a more active approach like in Mississippi. Where they a very active basically had a direct action type of thing. Which works, for the first few months. But then you have to change tactics because the employers get wise and start to sue you. [laughs]. But at some point you can also get that- so the worker center does a combination of strategies but it is very hard. They did pass an ordinance, a historic ordinance at the city counsel- was it last year or two years ago? It is historic- I think there is only one other city in the whole country that has a worker ordinance of that type where they can get a city contractor who fails to pay. And they do fail to pay their workers. So it is a hard thing- and they organized domestic workers which is also another sector that gets abused. So they have a special group that works with domestic workers. Over all, it continues to work, but the most valuable work for me is to work around the wage theft because there are laws – the wage and hours division of the federal government, the workforce commission of the state, but they are tied into specific laws but the immigrants do not fall into that so that is why the worker center is important for the issue of wage theft.

Interview Interview with Maria Jimenez
Subjects Citizenship › Citizenship Law Enforcement › Immigration and Naturalization Service
Citizenship › Immigration Status
Community Organizations
Work › Types of Work › Domestic work
Work › Compensation
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Interview date 2016-06-13
Interview source CRBB Summer 2016
Interviewees Jimenez, Maria
Interviewers Enriquez, Sandra
Rodriguez, Samantha
Locations Houston, TX
Duration 00:02:18
Citation "Workers Center In Houston ," from Maria Jimenez oral history interview with Sandra Enriquez and Samantha Rodriguez,  June 13, 2016, Houston, Civil Rights in Black and Brown Interview Database,, accessed April 15, 2024