Equality State Policy Center — Research & Publications

Over the years, the Equality State Policy Center has conducted its own research and partnered with other state and national organizations to develop a fuller picture of the effects of state policies on the lives of Wyoming citizens. In 2014, the Wyoming Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health (WyCOSH) produced the report, “Preventable Deaths: Safety and Health in Wyoming.” The report includes stories of two fathers whose sons were killed in workplace deaths. It looks at the importance of enforcement of job safety laws to ensure every employee’s right to safe and healthy workplace. And it closes with a list of 12 policy and process recommendations that we believe will make it safer to work in Wyoming. The ESPC’s WyCOSH project includes work by the Wyoming State AFL-CIO, the Wyoming Trial Lawyers Association, the Wyoming Association of Churches, and the Spence Association for Employee Rights (SAFER). In 2008 and 2010, we produced “State of Working Wyoming” reports to help policy-makers and advocates understand how Wyoming citizens are faring economically. We’ve also used these reports to show how Wyoming’s reliance on tax revenues from mineral extraction – primarily coal, oil and gas – leave the state vulnerable to sudden swings in energy prices, creating the booms that have fueled expansion in the state but also bringing crushing busts that have devastated communities. In 2008, the ESPC joined with other advocacy organizations in the West to analyze mining taxes in 10 Western states. The ESPC also made the case for raising severance taxes in a number of reports, as current rates of taxation are insufficient to save enough for future needs. Over the years, other ESPC reports have analyzed the coal industry and developed arguments for making sure that Wyoming’s great mineral wealth benefits its people as well as the multi-national corporations that reap profits from mining and selling these commodities. Other research reports have examined Wyoming’s school funding system. We’ve also published educational materials that make the case for greater transparency in government and for more comprehensive lobbyist reporting. Finally, the ESPC has published a number of reports on legislative sessions since 2001.