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05/20/2019 | Forced Arbitration: A Corporate Attack on Workers’ Rights

Unchecked Corporate Power: Forced arbitration, the enforcement crisis, and how workers are fighting back

We predict that by 2024, more than 80 percent of private-sector, nonunion workers will be blocked from suing their employers by forced arbitration clauses.

    Working families in many states have won crucial new workplace protections, including dramatic increases to the minimum wage, paid sick time, and family leave and protections against unpredictable part-time work schedules. These policies are powerful tools for fighting economic inequality; they help working families put food on the table, keep a roof over their heads, and care for their children and family members. But the real-world impact of these historic policy wins depends on effective enforcement. Historically, workplace standards have been enforced through the combined efforts of public agencies and private class-action lawsuits. Today, corporate use of forced arbitration, combined with shrinking budgets for public worker protection agencies, is undermining our new, hard-won workplace standards as well as long-standing protections. The right to be paid a livable minimum wage, to take meal and rest breaks, to safe workplaces, and to equal earning and promotion opportunities regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, or other social category—all of these important rights are at risk of being hollowed out by underenforcement. 

    Read more by downloading the report.