Harvard University’s Wage Parity Policy Bolsters Middle-Class Workers

NEC Member Harvard University was featured in a New York Times article that profiled one of the university’s food service employees, Martha Bonilla. At her job preparing breakfast and lunch for executives at Harvard Business School, Ms. Bonilla and other Harvard service employees receive the same pay and benefits as those who are employed directly by the university.

Harvard’s policy requiring parity among service workers and university employees was formally adopted after numerous student-led protests in 2001 demanding better pay for campus workers. Recent research claiming that wage disparity in the US is a product of institutions outsourcing to low-wage contractors further motivates Harvard’s effort to avoid outsourcing and pull workers from the bottom of the labor market into the middle class.

The New England Council commends Harvard University’s efforts toward wage parity and thanks them for their commitment to support hard working serving employees on their campus.

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