Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee released the following statement on the 5-4 Supreme Court decision Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, which ruled employers can ban workers from joining together in a legal dispute when their rights are being violated.
“As more and more women and men are coming forward and bravely sharing their stories of workplace harassment, we’re witnessing the power of many voices being able to join together and act as one. Unfortunately, today’s decision sends a chilling signal to workers who are being mistreated by employers that they must stand alone as they defend themselves against predatory corporations that too often put their own interests first. This is true when it comes to the scourge of workplace sexual harassment, it’s true when corporations steal or unlawfully withhold wages or discriminate on the basis of race, and it’s true in so many other ways when workers’ rights are violated.
“This decision allows corporations to lock workers out of the courts when they are being taken advantage of, which for too many workers is their only recourse to protect their health and rights. To workers around the country, I stand with you and will keep fighting to restore and protect workers’ abilities to join together, advocate for their coworkers, and stand up for their rights.”