Lieff Cabraser Civil Justice Blog

Google Employees Push for Legislation to End Forced Arbitration in Employment Contracts

Google employees are organizing a phone drive that will take place on Wednesday, May 1st to press lawmakers into supporting The Forced Arbitration Injustice Repeal (“FAIR”) Act. The FAIR Act is an initiative recently reintroduced in the House of Representatives seeking to end the use of arbitration agreements in employment contracts so as to sidestep public trials. Widely used across many industries, these clauses are inserted into workers’ contracts more and more frequently to require that the workers waive their right to sue their employers in a real and public court. Instead, employee complaints are funneled into a private legal system, where employers (who fund the system) are viewed as having the upper hand in the settling of job-related disputes.

Though Google dropped its use of forced arbitration clauses in February, some of its workers want to see lawmakers ban the practice on a national level. Employees of the tech giant recently appeared alongside Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) to urge Congress to pass the FAIR Act.

As reported by The Verge, employees organizing the phone bank are requesting that participants make three calls to lawmakers — two to the caller’s senators and one to their representative — pushing for the Forced Arbitration Injustice Repeal Act. Google workers have also published a guide equipped with legislators’ websites and contact information.

“In denying access to the courts, Google denied its employees access to their rights,” the employees said in a statement. “While we’ve seen some significant strides by our employer, we refuse to rest until all workers have their full rights.

Upholding Employee Rights

Lieff Cabraser has a strong tradition of fighting for employee rights across America. Our employment law class action cases challenge discrimination based on employees’ race, color, national origin, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation, or disability; wage violations, including failure to pay overtime, break time, or vacation time; and misuse of employees’ retirement benefits. We also represent employees who “blow the whistle” on wrongdoing by their employers as well as in other cases alleging violations of the law.