Sacramento, CA , October 17 - This weekend, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced a veto of the “Protect Call Center Jobs Act of 2019” (AB1677), anti-offshoring legislation that would have protected California’s working families and taxpayers while adding new accountability to the process big corporations rely on to relocate customer service jobs overseas.
The bill, which passed overwhelmingly in both the California Assembly and Senate, would require that all customer service call center work done on behalf of the State of California and paid for with California taxpayer dollars to be performed within the state of California and not in another state or overseas. The legislation would also require private California call center employers to alert the State Labor Commissioner before they eliminate and ship overseas a large number of California-based call center jobs. Offshoring companies would be ineligible for certain taxpayer-funded grants, loans, and tax credits. AB 1677 protects California jobs and prevents California taxpayers from funding overseas jobs.
According to Frank Arce, District 9 Vice President for the Communications Workers of America (CWA):
“By vetoing the state call center bill, Governor Newsom made the wrong call and sided with the CEOs of multinational corporations instead of California’s working families and taxpayers. In his veto statement, Governor Newsom was more concerned with how CEOs might respond than with the experience of actual Californians who may be out of work because their jobs are sent out of state and overseas.
AB 1677 protects California-based jobs and workers, including thousands of CWA members who have spent years serving California customers. It also ensures California taxpayer dollars are spent on companies who invest in California workers, rather than to create jobs in other states or countries. And it would ensure large corporations do not take a handout of our tax dollars and then turn around and ship California customer service jobs overseas to countries where they can pay rock bottom wages and don’t have to respect workers’ rights. The “Protect Call Center Jobs Act” would have been a big step toward strengthening the job security of working families in California.
The veto of this legislation only benefits big corporate interests and global outsourcing and offshoring vendors, such as Irvine-based Alorica - which has laid off more than 3,000 workers in the U.S. over the past year, while mistreating its global workforce in countries such as the Philippines. California should be a world leader in standing up for working people and ensuring that Californians’ tax dollars are used to create and support jobs in California. Governor Newsom’s veto is a missed opportunity and the wrong call for California. CWA will continue its fight to protect California jobs and workers."