This week, the U.S. Chamber hosted a Labor Relations forum at its headquarters in Washington, D.C. where representatives from multi-state corporations, labor and employment attorneys and chamber representatives across the nation were in attendance. Loren Furman, the Colorado Chamber’s chief lobbyist, spoke alongside panelists Glenn Spencer, Senior VP Employment Policy Division for the U.S. Chamber, and Meredith Singer, Governmental Programs Executive of IBM.
Furman shared comments on the colorful and often challenging 2019 Legislative Session as well as labor and employment legislation including the family and medical leave legislation (SB 188). She discussed the collaboration and tireless work of the coalition members on the bill, which included Colorado Chamber members, local chambers of commerce, multiple trade associations, cities, counties and special districts, multiple trade associations, the U.S. Chamber, the National Association of Manufacturing and businesses such as IBM, and many others impacted by the legislation. Furman discussed the final outcome of the bill and next steps for Colorado. Attendees were interested in the legislation based on the potential for the legislation to be introduced in other states.
During the forum, Labor Relations Subcommittee members addressed key issues such as immigration; wage, hour and leave issues; the National Labor Relations Act and OSHA. Presenters included Colorado Chamber member Meredith Singer of IBM, Camille Olson of Seyfarth Shaw, Leonard Crowley of Crowe & Dunlevy, Brian Hayes of Ogletree Deakins and Dave Keeley of UPS. Additionally, Marvin Kaplan, member of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) spoke on current labor relations lawsuits and the process being conducted by the NLRB to resolve those cases. Some of these solutions were said to involve providing extra training for laborers, getting in touch with a construction accident specialist who could advise them on avoiding accidents, and rigorous bi-monthly health and safety inspections.
The forum also included many other movers and shakers in D.C. including Raj Shah, former White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary, who discussed his role in working for President Trump and shared the President’s interests with hearing directly from business leaders on labor issues. He also shared fascinating insights on the President’s famous tweets and his approach with speeches and handling situations when the President goes “off-script.”