Labor boards are charged with enforcing state labor laws, according to the New York Department of Labor. These laws mandate minimum wage, work hours, safe and fair working conditions for employees, and in some states unemployment insurance to assist the unemployed. There is also a federal labor board that was particularly relevant in the 1930s.
Employees who believe that they have been treated in a way that is not in compliance with their state's labor law may file a claim or making a report with their state's labor board, reports the New York Department of Labor. Representatives of the board review the case and usually ask for more information from the employee and the employer before coming to a decision. Sometimes these decisions can include cash payments. In other instances they may include mandating the right to work, or that an employer provide safety equipment, work aid or some other type of accommodation. In some instances boards may reject claims.
The New York State Department of Labor offers wage protection ensuring wages are paid and mandating a minimum wage, hours of work, child labor, migrant farm labor, conditions in the garment industry and unemployment insurance. In New York State the minimum wage is mandated to be $8.00 per hour as of 2014.
The Connecticut Department of Labor explains that labor boards ensure that employers are compliant with standards concerning asbestos, occupational safety in the workplace, boiler safety, licenses for crane operators, blasters, asbestos workers and inspection of ski areas, amusement rides and places of public assembly, as well as other provisions that vary by state.