Last Week’s Surprisingly Deep Victory for LGBT Workers

Last Week’s Surprisingly Deep Victory for LGBT Workers

This post was originally published at Jacobin. Last Monday, the Supreme Court ruled that employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity is prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The decision brings employment law in line with public opinion: a majority of Americans favor employment protections for LGBT…

Read Amna Akbar on the Abolitionist Moment at NYRB!

Read Amna Akbar on the Abolitionist Moment at NYRB!

We are assured Amna will have more to say here at the Blog, but for now check out her account of the abolitionist movement has developed into the type of coalition that can make real change in this moment. From the conclusion: “The struggle for abolition belongs to a broader push to rewrite the social…

Don’t Reform Policing, Transform It

Don’t Reform Policing, Transform It

A version of this post appeared on the Boston Review’s website yesterday. There is a distressing disconnect between the ringing demands for justice on the streets and the suite of “police reform” proposals that many experts say satisfy these demands. Protesters and social movements talk about divesting from policing and investing in black communities. They talk about ensuring that “the most impacted in our communities…

The Case for Basic Health

The Case for Basic Health

We seem to be approaching an apotheosis of liberal health care angst, as the irresistible force of the appeal of truly universal health care meets the immovable object of Democrats’ desire to make double-triple-sure not to lose the 2020 election. Replacing our current shambles of a health care system with something much simpler and more…

The Uber/Lyft “Workers’ Association” Debate: A Response to Dubal

The Uber/Lyft “Workers’ Association” Debate: A Response to Dubal

N.B.: Benjamin Sachs penned this response to Part I of Veena Dubal’s post on comparing solidarity unionism with company unions earlier this week. In the spirit of debate, we’re cross-posting from On Labor.  Veena Dubal writes an important piece that raises concerns about Uber and Lyft’s suggestion that drivers in California form a “workers’ association.” Dubal worries…

Law and Politics in Employee Classification

Law and Politics in Employee Classification

As has been widely reported, the U.S. Department of Labor issued an “opinion letter” yesterday concluding that an unnamed “virtual marketplace company” does not employ the workers who make the company viable. Instead, the letter finds that these workers are independent contractors. The letter is flawed in multiple ways. As Sharon will explain, deciding a major…

Democratizing the Workplace

Democratizing the Workplace

This post opens a symposium on Elizabeth Anderson’s Private Government: How Employers Rule Our Lives (and Why We Don’t Talk about It). Read the complete symposium here. Work can go wrong in many ways. Ship breakers in Bangladesh routinely die as they try to dismantle abandoned vessels with acetylene torches. Meat cutters in Iowa suffer repetitive stress injuries…

The Procedure Fetish

The Procedure Fetish

That’s the title of a new article of mine, slated for publication in the Michigan Law Review. It’s more polemical than most of my work, and it aims to disrupt some of the tidy stories that organize modern administrative law. Although I hope it finds an audience across the political spectrum, its primary target is…

Majority Leverage Against Minority Rule

Majority Leverage Against Minority Rule

There’s a lot for liberals to despair about these days and the Kavanaugh appointment sharpened several sources of that despair. After such an intensely partisan fight about the Court, and especially after the remarkable, norm-shattering partisan performance of the Justice himself at his final confirmation hearing, some of the liberal worry is inevitably focused on…

Sachs & Block on Labor Day

Sachs & Block on Labor Day

We’re back from our hiatus, and first up, this cross-post from On Labor, about a new blueprint for labor law. Shouldn’t every day be Labor Day? This Labor Day, A Clean Slate for Reform As divided as we have become as a country, we arrive at this Labor Day with a shared national understanding: both…

The Real Barriers to Access to Justice: A Labor Market Perspective

The Real Barriers to Access to Justice: A Labor Market Perspective

There is a vast literature on access to justice in the United States. In what Sameer Asher has diagnosed as a broadly neoliberal discourse, the legal profession itself stars as the key barrier to access to justice: It is slow to adopt technology, restricts entry with excessive licensure requirements, and bogs down in technicalities. Let’s…

The Crisis of Progressive Neoliberalism

The Crisis of Progressive Neoliberalism

How should we understand the crisis of the current moment? Is the election of President Trump a temporary aberration or does it reflect deeper political trends—both in the United States and elsewhere? In a recently published essay in American Affairs, I argue that the defining features of Trump’s agenda did not come out of nowhere. What…

California Bans the Box, Twice

California Bans the Box, Twice

A core LPE theme is the construction of markets through political choices institutionalized in law. Those choices create an economy structured by whatever matters politically, including race. My Bailey series has been developing this theme in connection to the criminal regulation of work, in particular the use of criminal punishment to compel work. The more familiar…

Autocracy at Work: Understanding the Gothamist Shut Down

Autocracy at Work: Understanding the Gothamist Shut Down

Unionization is, and always has been, the most effective way that working people can wrest a bit of control back from owners like Ricketts. It operates through the simple logic of collective action: by bargaining together, people increase their leverage and gain a voice in shaping what their work lives are like. Unions move workplaces away from institutions governed autocratically – by those with the ‘money that pays for everything’ – and toward institutions that are governed democratically, by including the insights and opinions of those who do the work.