The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia recognizes the efforts of Philadelphia City Council to engage the business community and a diverse coalition of interests to address concerns around the proposed Fair Work Week legislation. While the ordinance passed today has objectionable components, the Chamber looks forward to working with the City to further ameliorate its concerns.
For over a year, the Chamber met with City Council and entities effected by the ordinance to provide input into the legislation and ensure employers are able to continue to provide employees with flexibility. The initial one-size-fits-all approach particularly hindered the City’s retail, restaurant and hospitality employers. The Chamber expressed concern throughout the process that without amendments the measure would result in the reduction in available positions, and a reduction in shifts and available hours for those who need flexibility the most.
“Neighborhood and Center City businesses negotiated with City Council in an effort to produce an outcome that is acceptable to all parties. While some amendments helped ease the regulatory burden on some employers, we are hopeful that the regulatory process will provide further relief to owners of hotels and franchise establishments,” said Chamber President Rob Wonderling.
The business coalition offered nearly 50 different suggestions to enhance the environment for workers while ensuring the measure did not make it more costly or difficult to run a business in Philadelphia. The Chamber sought for additional flexibility for workers and relief from an onerous regulatory compliance process. Other suggestions not adopted provided employees with a 30-minute window to arrive late or leave early, exempting catered events which are booked or cancelled on short notice, and allowing businesses to provide 14 days notice to work with employees to change work schedules.
The Chamber looks forward to opportunities to work with City Council on growth legislation that benefits all Philadelphians, businesses, and job-seekers alike.