(Washington, DC) – The National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) and The Employee Rights Advocacy Institute For Law & Policy (The Institute) applaud Representative Hank Johnson (D-GA) for introducing the Forced Arbitration Injustice Repeal Act (FAIR Act), which will end the insidious corporate practice of forcing workers and consumers to give up their rights by mandating them to address disputes in secret, one-sided arbitration proceedings.
The FAIR Act will open the courthouse doors and restore workers’ access to America’s civil justice system. Among other things, the FAIR Act will make it unlawful for employers to impose arbitration on workers, unless the worker knowingly and voluntarily agrees to arbitration after a dispute arises or pursuant to a collective bargaining agreement. Over 60 million working people in the U.S. are now subject to forced arbitration clauses which were designed to keep them from enforcing their legal rights.
“The unjust practice of forcing workers into arbitration must finally be dismantled,” Jeffrey A. Mittman, NELA Executive Director, said. “It strips vulnerable workers of the right to enforce laws that were designed to protect them when they are victims of illegal treatment in the workplace. Forced arbitration favors employers and coerces workers into losing either their rights or their jobs.”
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The National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) is the country’s largest professional organization of lawyers who represent individual employees in cases involving employment discrimination and other disputes with their employers. NELA advances employee rights and serves lawyers who advocate for equality and justice in the American workplace. NELA provides assistance and support to lawyers in protecting the rights of employees against the greater resources of their employers and the defense bar. It is the country’s largest professional organization exclusively comprised of lawyers who represent individual employees in cases involving employment discrimination and other employment-related matters. NELA and its 69 circuit, state, and local affiliates have more than 4,000 members around the country.
Founded in 2008, The Employee Rights Advocacy Institute For Law & Policy (The Institute) is the related charitable public interest organization of the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA). Working hand in hand with NELA, The Institute advances workers’ rights through research, thought leadership, and education for policymakers, advocates, and the public.