Big news today by MSFT when they announced a policy change to "eliminate forced arbitration agreements with employees who make sexual harassment claims and was also supporting a proposed federal law that would widely ban such agreements." Article from the New York Times. What does this mean?
Forced arbitration is a common mechanism that corporations use to silence women when they are harassed at work. Many employment contracts include an arbitration clause that signs away the right to trial and nondisclosure agreements which reduces the ability of victims to sound the alarm re: perpetrators. It means women forgo their right to trial by jury, which also reduces their chances of winning. @Gretchencarlson has been a leading voice after she was harassed by Roger Ailes at Fox and Democrats like Kiristin Gillibrand (NY Senate) @SenGillibrand are working to shift policy. Read Kirsten's OpEd article in the New York Times
Our goal of The Forem is to provide experts and tools to help women advocate more effectively for themselves while we partner with corporations to shift organizational policy. In the coming months, The Forem will roll out resources to ensure women are informed before they take on new roles and sign away their rights - more to come on that!
In the meantime - thank you Microsoft and expect the other tech giants to follow suit.