The United States Department of Labor (DOL) is a very large federal bureaucracy, comprising over 15,000 employees and with an annual budget in excess of $11 billion. You are one worker, or a small group, with an issue. How will you find someone with the answer to your question? You can call Pelton Graham any time for a no cost consultation, but here is some helpful information if you would like to get started on your own.
You can always call the DOL general help number, 866-487-2365, and ask your question. It will be helpful to you, however, if you have some idea of what the person on the other end of the line is looking at. Here are some tips and tricks to get through to the department or people with the expertise to help you.
The DOL has multiple departments and functions; here are those that an individual worker may most likely have the need to contact for information or support.
- Wage and Hour Division – a very important division of the DOL, WHD enforces:
- minimum wage
- overtime pay
- child labor laws
- the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act
- the Employee Polygraph Protection Act
- the Family and Medical Leave Act
- wage garnishment provisions of the Consumer Credit Protection Act
- worker protections as provided in several immigration related statutes
- the prevailing wage requirements of the Davis-Bacon Act
- Occupational and Safety and Health Administration – ensures safe and healthy workplaces for US workers.
- Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs – holds federal government contractors and subcontractors responsible for complying with the legal requirement to take affirmative action and not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, national origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran.
- Veterans Employment and Training Services (VETS) – helps veterans by preparing them for meaningful careers, providing employment resources and expertise, and protecting their employment rights.
- Employee Benefits Security Administration – enforces laws regarding retirement plans, health benefits, and other employee benefits.
- Job Corps – helps connect people with training and access to high-paying careers that are hiring today.
- Employees’ Compensation Appeals Board – hears appeals of federal workers regarding on-the-job injuries.
- Mine Safety and Health Administration – works to prevent illness and injury from mining and promote safe workplaces for miners.
At Pelton Graham we can help you in all of the areas in which the DOL protects workers. Here’s how, where, and why we most often interact with the DOL:
- Discrimination – we represent clients who have suffered discrimination on the basis of their race, sex, gender, age, disability, religious affiliation, national origin, etc.
- Wage theft – gaining compensation for unpaid minimum wage, overtime, prevailing wage, commissions, etc.
- Harassment – we get results for clients who have experienced sexual, racial, or other harassment as persons in protected categories.
- Retaliation – workers who report, or even ask about, workplace issues are protected from retaliation, which is the most common equal employment violation.
- Workers’ Compensation – navigating a complex system of state law and special courts, we help clients who are injured on the job to get their full compensation.
- Safety and Health – while the DOL makes and enforces worker safety rules, at Pelton Graham we work to ensure that those who are injured by the negligence of others are duly compensated.
- COVID requirements – the rules governing employers, employees, contractors, guests, customers, etc. are evolving at a rapid pace. Pelton Graham is abreast of the key developments and how they may affect our clients.
One final thought: the Department of Labor, large and powerful as it is, cannot begin to address the many violations of law that happen every day in workplaces across the United States. That is why firms like Pelton Graham exist – both to right the wrongs done to individual clients, and also to help bring about positive change in every workplace by enforcing the laws on behalf of individuals.
Some employers acting in good faith do change in the face of a serious legal challenge to their discriminatory or illegal actions, others have to be repeatedly confronted in order to obtain compliance with the law and fair treatment for workers.
The professionals at Pelton Graham are here to help. Contact us for a no cost, no obligation consultation.