The Center for Workers’ Rights helped plan and facilitate this year’s Coalition of Low-Wage and Immigrant Worker Advocates (CLIWA) Retreat and Conference. The Conference was held on May 15 and 16th at the SEIU-USWW office in Los Angeles.
CLIWA was born in 2006 from the merger of two coalitions: CIWA (Coalition of Immigrant Worker Advocates) and LAWAC (Los Angeles Worker Advocates Coalition.) Its mission is to facilitate worker empowerment and end exploitation in low-wage targeted industries. Based on this objective, CLIWA facilitates a proactive, effective, and empowering relationship between governmental regulatory agencies and low-wage workers, with a special focus on immigrant workers, and to work on policy and administrative reform to increase worker protections.
The membership of the CLIWA consist of non-profit legal services organizations and worker centers who advocate for the rights of low-wage workers, including immigrant workers, and whose mission coincides with CLIWA’s mission to facilitate worker empowerment and end exploitation in low-wage industries.
This year’s retreat welcomed former CLIWA member and newly appointed head of the Department of Fair Employment and Housing, Kevin Kish, as our luncheon keynote speaker, who discussed his intended changes for the agency, Training sessions included discussion of remedies and strategies for combating arbitration agreements, tips on representing domestic workers, and retaliation remedies for immigrant workers. Each year, CLIWA reviews updates in legislation and litigation and discusses best practices for wage claims at the Labor Commissioner.
Center for Workers’ Rights Executive Director, Daniela Urban, took leadership on the conference planning committee and arranged for scholarships for staff from worker centers, allowing conference attendance to reflect the spectrum of organizational members without concern for resources. Ms. Urban now sits on the CLIWA Coordinating Committee.