Legal, Laws, and Regs

Arbitration update

Recovered from the Wayback Machine.

I need to write an update on arbitration and what’s happening with the Arbitration Fairness Act of 2007. In a way, I’d almost rather we wait on a vote until after we have a Democratic president, because anything that doesn’t support corporations over the people will be vetoed by President Bush. At least with a Democratic president, we’ll have someone who cares about consumers, employees, and regular people like you and me.

In the meantime, you can compare how various sides debate this issue. Kia from Tortdeform has three recent items. Huffington Post has a story about more women abused by KBR employees in Iraq and forced into arbitration.

Then there’s Ted at Overlawyered. Ted works for one of the conservative think tanks. I wouldn’t want it said that I didn’t point out the opposition. Here’s a couple of recent posts from Ted. Personally, I think Ted does more to sell the Arbitration Fairness act of 2007 than almost anyone I know, and he’s against it. Do be sure to check out the comments.

This is my favorite from a recent exchange:

Me: The only choice I know of with arbitration clauses in employment contracts is not to take the jobs. That doesn’t strike me as a true choice. Does that strike you as a true choice?

TF: KBR employees have that option. They don’t have to work for KBR if they would rather have lower wages with an employer that does not have a mandatory arbitration agreement. It’s just one of the terms and conditions of employment, like free parking, a free gym, and how many weeks of vacation are offered.

Yes, I typically equate the loss of constitutional rights with free parking and a gym pass.

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