Oxfam’s annual ranking of states with free market policies is out, and once again its title is proving good bait for leftist political groups and news media.
Oxfam is a 501C3 group that promotes liberal positions, including pro-union, pro-abortion and government interventionist policies. The group says its work is focused on lobbying for economic justice, gender equality and climate action.
“Oxfam is a global organization that fights inequality to end poverty and injustice…Inequality is the most pressing issue of our time,” their site says.
Its annual index, called the best and worst states to work for in America 2022, ranks the 50 states, Washington, DC and Puerto Rico according to its own public policy goals, which are to promote government intervention in business. private. North Carolina ranks last, at 52, based on its high level of free-market politics.
The study does not examine wage growth or investigate worker satisfaction, cost of living, or state population growth as workers move across the country.
The annual index ranks states according to three general areas; what is the level and extent of enforcement of the state minimum wage law, whether states have union-friendly policies, and whether the state government mandates benefits for workers.
“This index looks specifically at state-level policies for workers,” said Kaitlyn Henderson, Ph.D. and senior researcher for Oxfam, in an interview with Carolina Journal after the last survey in 2021. “We really wanted celebrate states that seek to support even the lowest-earning worker.”
North Carolina ranks last at number 52 on Oxfam’s list, similar to last year. NC is a right to work state and has been for 75 years. This means that there are no “closed shops”. Workers are not required to join a union to be employed here.
“Research continues to indicate that right-to-work states not only create more jobs than their counterparts, but that workers in these states report greater life satisfaction,” the president said. of the John Locke Foundation, Donald Bryson.
However, worker satisfaction is still not taken into account in the annual ranking. NC is among 28 states with right to work laws, making it a target for groups like Oxfam.
Other areas Oxfam is measuring are whether states require companies to provide a litany of benefits, including paid sick and family leave, regulations for flexible hours for shift workers or require companies to disclose staff salaries.
Because Oxfam researchers focus their index on states’ alignment with their public policies, some real data is not taken into account. North Carolina is the 14e State with rapid population growth, and only one of Oxfam’s top states is gaining population.
Oxfam ranked Oregon first in its Oxfam survey, followed by California, Washington, the District of Columbia and New York in the top five. The highest scoring category for these states in their survey is “Right to Organize”.
“Oregon is one of three states to pass new laws mandating heat protections for outdoor workers at a time when no federal protections exist,” their report said. “He leads the United States with policies to improve working conditions and secure the right to organize. It also offers strong unemployment benefits.
Georgia and Mississippi, ranked 51 and 50, have been criticized by the group not just for the policies it claims to measure.
“…both states have moved to severely restrict women’s access to abortion since the overthrow of Roe v. Wade, their labor policies make it cruelly harder for working women to provide for the babies they are now forced to carry to term,” the Oxfam researchers wrote.
Four of the five states Oxfam listed as “best for workers” were also among the most expensive places to live, and three of the five have lost population in recent years.