For Women and Minorities to Get Ahead, Managers Must Assign Work Fairly

March 5, 2018

businessman smiles away from camera as he talks to a woman

The latest article by WorkLife Law Founding Director Joan C. Williams and Research and Policy Fellow Marina Multhaup reveals the major diversity initiative that your company may be missing. Assignments of “glamour work” – that is, work that gets noticed around the office and can lead to promotions – must be distributed fairly and equally.


Results from White Paper Published in The Atlantic

January 31, 2018

woman scientist with microscope

The findings from WorkLife Law’s white paper “Does the stereotype that ‘Asian people are good at science’ help women of Asian descent in STEM careers? No” have been published in an article in the Atlantic. Co-authored by Joan C. Williams, Marina Multhaup, and Rachel Korn, the article discusses how common Asian-American stereotypes are holding back the careers of Asian-American women.


The results are in! First look at data from scheduling study

December 27, 2017

WorkLife Law Founding Director Joan C. Williams, along with co-PIs Susan Lambert and Saravanan Kesavan, have released the first findings from their study on retail scheduling. They conducted an experiment with The Gap to find out if the use of a shift-swapping app would provide retail workers with the flexibility they needed to have more control over their schedules. The results are striking – read them here.


Deputy Director Liz Morris writes blog post describing threat of Workflex Act

December 5, 2017

Closeup of caring mother holding head on sick daughter forehead

Liz Morris outlines three key problems with a new bill introduced in Congress, the Workflex in the 21st Century Act, in her latest HuffPost blog post. The Act threatens working parents’ ability to care for and support their families by undermining existing state laws and leaving employees vulnerable to employer abuse. Check out the full post here.


White Paper: Does the stereotype that “Asian people are good at science” help women of Asian descent in STEM careers? No.

October 5, 2017

woman scientist with microscope

New research from the Center for WorkLife Law at UC Hastings on bias against Asian women in STEM.  “The stereotype in the United States is that “Asian people are good at science.” You might think that this stereotype would advantage U.S. women of Asian descent in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. We found the opposite: instead, they encounter the same types of bias that other people of color do. This information is important because most diversity initiatives in STEM address the challenges faced by under-represented minorities (URMs)—black and Latino/a people—but exclude Asian people.”


Supporting Breastfeeding Moms at Work: How a Doctor’s Note Can Make the Difference

October 3, 2017

Nursing Area sign

One of the most critical junctures for community support of breastfeeding is the mother’s return to work. When breastfeeding workers have access to both time and space for expressing breast milk, they are more likely to breastfeed for the recommended term, yet many mothers still struggle to access these simple accommodations in their workplace. Healthcare providers can and should aid nursing mothers in accessing these accommodations.


WorkLife Law presents at BreastfeedLA’s Advocacy 101 Training

August 29, 2017


WorkLife Law is presenting at the BreastfeedLA’s Breastfeeding Advocacy 101 Free Training on Thursday, August 31. Staff attorney Hilary Rau will be discussing all the major federal and California laws that protect breastfeeding workers and giving some strategic advice for talking with employers about lactation accommodations. We are joining the California Breastfeeding Coalition, Northeast Valley Health Corporation, Legal Aid at Work, California Women’s Law Center, and ACLU of Southern California. For more information, visit


New Report on Postdoc Parents

June 26, 2017

Postdoc Report Cover

The Center’s Pregnant Scholar Initiative has just released a report, Parents in the Pipeline: Retaining Postdoctoral Researchers with Families. This report is part of the Center’s effort to ensure that parents—and mothers in particular—have an equal opportunity to advance in STEM fields.  Parents in the Pipeline, based on institutional data and the first comprehensive nationwide survey of postdocs who have children, highlights the full dimension of the parenthood leak in the STEM pipeline and what institutions can do about it.


WorkLife Law Connecting Medical Providers with Legal Resources

Jessica Lee

Staff Attorney Jessica Lee will be presenting at the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine’s Ninth Annual Summit on Breastfeeding on a panel “Expanding Community Supports for Mothers & Fathers at Home and in the Workplace.” Lee will discuss the critical role that healthcare providers can have on ensuring mothers can continue breastfeeding when they return to work.


Missed our Shop Stewards Webinar? No problem!

ufcw labor project

WorkLife Law partnered with the AFL-CIO, Labor Project for Working Families, and UFCW to produce In Solidarity: Union Support for Pregnant and Breastfeeding Workers. The webinar aired on April 18, 2017 to an audience of over 75 shop stewards and union representatives. During and after pregnancy, workers are particularly vulnerable to job insecurity and unfair treatment, which often goes undetected. But unions are well-positioned to ensure pregnant and breastfeeding workers are treated fairly on the job. Watch this one-hour workshop to learn about the supportive role unions can play in promoting protections for pregnant and breastfeeding workers.


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