Virginia ranked No. 23 in the Oxfam America’s 2021 Best States to Work Index
In 2018 and 2019, Virginia was the bottom of the list, but the state rose to No. 24 in 2020.
Virginia ranked No. 23 in the Oxfam America’s 2021 Best States to Work Index, continuing its rise from last place in 2019.
Anti-poverty organization Oxfam America examines wage policies, worker protections and rights to organize to create its index of the 50 states, Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico.
In 2018 and 2019, Virginia was the bottom of the list, but the state rose to No. 24 in 2020. The report credits organizers encouraging the General Assembly and Gov. Ralph Northam to provide protections for domestic workers, expand protections for pregnant workers and bolster those against sexual harassment, as well as to increase the minimum wage, as the reason for the state’s rankings improvement. Additionally, Virginia was the only state to pass an Emergency Temporary Standard for workplace safety to address COVID-19. (In January, Virginia passed a Final Permanent Standard.)
The report added a Best States for Working Women Index this year: Virginia ranked No. 18. This index analyzes the ratio of tipped wage to cost of living (for one earner and two dependents); worker protections, including paid leave; equal pay; and affixed and fair scheduling. The index also used public school teachers’ right to organize, since 76% are women.