National Employment Law Project

In Brief:

Has helped win numerous state and local campaigns to improve wages and working conditions for millions of workers, including minimum wage laws, “ban the box” measures helping people with criminal records, expanded unemployment benefits, and protections against wage theft and subcontracted work abuses. NELP leads the federal minimum wage campaign and works on regulatory reforms in unemployment insurance and overtime pay. It is a strong partner to grassroots groups and an adept coalition-builder.

For more than 45 years, the National Employment Law Project has sought to ensure that America upholds for all workers her promise of opportunity and economic security through work.

NELP fights for policies to create good jobs, expand access to work, and strengthen protections and support for low-wage workers and the unemployed.

NELP publishes research that illuminates workers’ issues; promote policies that improve workers’ lives; lend deep legal and policy expertise to important cases and campaigns; and partner with allies to advance crucial reforms.

Model of Change

NELP works from the ground up to build systemic change. It collaborates with community partners on advocacy campaigns, developing and testing innovative policy ideas in cities and states, then scaling them up to effect change nationally.

It partners with advocacy networks grounded in the full range of stakeholders — grassroots groups and national organizations, worker centers and unions, policymakers and think tanks.

The Resistance

In addition to its advocacy efforts to advance economic justice, the National Employment Law Project (NELP) increased its oversight and litigation efforts to defend worker policy gains since the 2016 Election. Key advocacy efforts have included opposing attacks on public sector unions; protecting overtime pay and workplace health and safety; defending a key civil rights agency within Department of Labor that the Trump Administration proposed eliminating; and leading a successful legislative fight to strengthen federal protections against wage theft for tipped workers. NELP has also partnered with allies in the states to advance progress where possible and to resist attacks, such as the movement to preempt local government policymaking.