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Wage Enforcement, Raising the Minimum, the Public Cost of Low Wages, a Slow Recovery, Vulnerable Children, and Chronic Care

The National Employment Law Project has released an in-depth new report detailing policy options for government to better enforce wage and overtime time laws, from shutting down sweatshops to strengthening state enforcement agencies to encouraging private enforcement by workers and advocates.

The Economic Policy Institute has released a statement by five Nobel prize winners and more than 600 other economists supporting a higher minimum wage indexed to inflation.

According to a new report by the state's Department of Health and Family Services, health care for low-wage workers cost Illinois $335.7 million between August 2005 and March of this year. 363,000 workers from 3,270 companies receive state-funded health care in that period. The information was collected pursuant to the state's Public Health Program Beneficiary Employer Disclosure Law to track how the costs of employers' failure to provide health insurance impacts taxpayers.

Job growth during this recovery has been far below historical rates, according to the Center for Budget Policy and Priorities.

Across the country, 32 percent of children placed with a relative by social service agencies are living with relatives who do not receive any type of payment for the child's care, just one finding in a recent report by the Urban Institute on children in particularly vulnerable families.

Chronic care management is costly and common systems of fee-for-service reimbursement of hospitals increase those costs argues the California Health Care Foundation in its new report, Challenging the Status Quo in Chronic Disease Care. Chronic care would be better funded through systems of payment per month systems.