Carmen Martino

Carmen Martino is a strategic researcher and the director of Latino Occupational Safety and Health Initiative (LOSHI) at the Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations in New Brunswick, NJ.

Recent Articles

Regular Work in an Irregular Economy

Ending the temp agencies' control of low-wage labor markets

Imagine that you are a young person trying to find your first full-time job in New Brunswick, New Jersey, a small city about 35 miles southwest of New York. You don't want to work in a restaurant or a fast-food joint, because they won't give you enough hours to make a living, and they don't provide benefits. There aren't many full-time opportunities in your neighborhoods, because most factories and warehouses have left town for the suburbs. Commuting to suburban regions where there are more employers is impractical; mass transit is inadequate, you can't afford a decent car, and fuel prices are high. If you are a Latino worker, your only option is to register at one of the labor agencies that have flocked to your neighborhood in recent years. One is probably within walking distance, with a big sign saying, "Workers wanted." Most of these labor agencies are organized along racial and ethnic lines. If you're African American, chances are there won't be a labor agency for you nearby...