A report by Oxfam America ranked Washington state number one based on wages, worker protections and workers’ rights during the pandemic. The report also included all 50 states, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico.
Oxfam has produced an annual Best States to Work index since 2018. This version of the index assesses and ranks how states are supporting residents during the pandemic. The index data is based on policies and laws in effect between Feb. 15, 2020 and July 1, 2020 in regards to three policy areas: worker protections, healthcare, and unemployment.
Washington came in first place with an overall score of 76.41.
The three areas each comprise a different amount of the overall score: worker protections make up 45%, healthcare 20%, and unemployment support 35%.
Some of the newer policy areas taken into consideration for points in the index include: protection against forced return to work, state funded childcare for essential workers, social protections in public (face mask requirements), waived cost sharing for COVID-19 treatment, expanded workers compensation due to COVID-19 and moratorium on eviction and utilities shut off.
Washington was also ranked number one by Oxfam in the same report in 2018.