Smartphone App Created for Day Laborers to Anonymously Report Employers

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Sacramento, CA – The New York Times reports that after three years of planning, an immigrant rights group is set to start a smartphone app for day laborers, a new digital tool with many uses: Workers will be able to rate employers (think Yelp or Uber), log their hours and wages, take pictures of job sites and help identify, down to the color and make of a car, employers with a history of withholding wages. They will also be able to send instant alerts to other workers. The advocacy group will safeguard the information and work with lawyers to negotiate payment. Not mentioned in the story is the opportunity for workers’ compensation carriers to recover lost premium.

"It will change my life and my colleagues’ lives a good deal," Omar Trinidad, a Mexican immigrant, said in Spanish through an interpreter. Mr. Trinidad is the lead organizer who helped develop the app. "Presently, there is a lot of wage theft," he said. "There has always been wage theft, and the truth is we’re going to put a stop to that." Mr. Trinidad, suggested the name for the app – Jornalero, which means day laborer in Spanish.

The app had its soft launch on Tuesday night, with beta testing to be held later this month at the Jackson Heights section of New York City day laborer stop that stretches for a mile along 69th Street. Day laborer centers in Brooklyn and on Staten Island will also be testing the product, which is available in Spanish and English.

The plan is for…

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