Business owners and managers in every work realm across Ohio have a broad-based focus every single day at the workplace. Profit concerns are of course a front-and-center consideration, but so too are a host of other matters.
Fostering a motivated and secure workforce is one obvious focal point for principals of any enterprise. Key to obtaining that objective is the implementation of company policies that seek to minimize workplace conflict and legal disputes centered on matters like wage issues and discrimination.
And sexual harassment, too, which is obviously a top-shelf concern these days for businesses of all stripes in Ohio and across the country.
Notably, it is also an uppercase concern for attorneys general spanning the country. Unanimously, all 50 of those individuals endorsed a letter sent to the U.S. Congress last month demanding the termination of a common business practice involving workers.
What has drawn the close attention of the country’s AGs is the funneling of on-the-job harassment claims into arbitration, which keeps sexual harassment matters private and — because not litigated in a courtroom — out of the public domain.
That disservices victims, say advocates and critics of the practice. The AGs’ letter states that mandatory arbitration promotes “a culture of silence that protects perpetrators at the cost of their victims.” Its signers say that claimants are entitled to a public hearing of their claims, before a judge and jury.
Reportedly, more than half of all American workers employed in private enterprises must sign away their right to a trial in a workplace dispute, being contractually required to pursue mandatory arbitration instead.
Candidly, business principals can cite valid and good-faith reasons for preferring arbitration over formal litigation as a venue for dispute resolution. The former is often a quicker and cheaper process, which undeniably confers favorable results on employees as well as employers in given instances.
Questions or concerns regarding any aspect of workplace dispute resolution can be directed to an experienced Ohio business law firm.