By Doug Cunningham
Workers and their supporters, including New York state lawmakers, rallied in New York City Thursday against corporate use forced arbitration contracts.
They announced legislation to end the widespread use of forced arbitration contracts that decimate worker and consumer rights to access the courts when dealing with wage theft, discrimination, fraud and exploitation.
A new report called “Justice for Sale: How Corporations Use Forced Arbitration to Exploit Working Families" lays out the problem.
Corporations use forced arbitration contracts to stack the deck in their favor in disputes. They take away the right of workers and consumers to pursue justice in the courts, forcing them into corporate designed binding arbitration systems instead.
The New York legislation is called the EmPIRE (Empowering People in Rights Enforcement) Worker Protection Act. It would extend the reach of public enforcement of worker and consumer protections.
Backers of the legislation say it would "ensure that employee whistleblowers can take companies that violate New York's labor laws to court."