March 26, 2024

Dear friend of WorkLife Law:

We are Jessica Lee and Liz Morris, the incoming co-directors of the Center for WorkLife Law at the University of California College of the Law, San Francisco. We are privileged and thrilled to step into this role and begin sharing with you our vision for the Center’s next chapter.

As WorkLife Law’s director Joan Williams recently announced, she is passing the baton after 25 remarkable years as the organization’s founder and leader. We are deeply grateful to Joan for her vision and mentorship and honored to have earned her trust to lead WorkLife Law into the future.


Our History at WorkLife Law

Over the last decade, we have been proud to play central roles in the Center’s growth into a national leader in the fight for economic security, racial justice, and health equity for workers, students, and the families they care for. As WorkLife Law’s deputy director, Liz led the Center’s legal team to advance gender and racial justice in the workplace and managed many of the Center’s daily operations. As Director of the Center’s Pregnant Scholar initiative, Jessica led the Center’s education equity work, successfully building the country’s first and only legal resource center for pregnant and parenting students. The success of our partnership made co-directing an obvious choice.

Together in recent years, we led a major expansion in services and number of people helped on WorkLife Law’s free legal helplines, changed public policy across the country through our model laws and cutting-edge research, and forged deep connections with government agencies, health care providers, and grassroots advocates.

We and our small but mighty team reflect the communities we serve: mothers, caregivers, multi-racial, disabled, non-binary, raised by student parents, and from immigrant families. We embrace and identify with WorkLife Law’s mission from our own challenges managing work, health, and care.


Our Vision for WorkLife Law’s Future

We envision a future where all people have the freedom to care for their loved ones and center their own health without jeopardizing their economic security. Despite remarkable progress made, the United States is far from achieving this ideal. Pregnancy and motherhood discrimination push families into poverty. Aging Americans do not have the support they need. And many of our public policies elevate profit above human dignity. But despite all of this, we firmly believe – and have observed in our own advocacy – that the arc bends toward justice.

Today’s political landscape is one of unparalleled risks, but also once-in-a-generation opportunities. Going forward, WorkLife Law will remain at the forefront of efforts to seize these opportunities, with an intensified focus on racial justice, an expansive understanding of family and care, and a continued emphasis on serving the most marginalized workers and students.

We are proud that the movement has come to rely on our unique legal expertise and practical solutions. Under our leadership, WorkLife Law will continue to fight for reproductive justice; prevent discrimination against family caregivers; promote legal rights for pregnant and lactating workers; operate the nation’s only legal resource center for pregnant and parenting students; and ensure equitable access to benefits for workers. Advocacy, education, and research in collaboration with the most impacted are the engines of social change.


Whether you have been WorkLife Law’s advocacy partner, recipient of our services, donor, or friend, you have helped build this organization and we are ever grateful. Over the coming year, we’ll be turning to you to share more about our ambitious agenda and to hear about your priorities so we can continue building this movement together.

We’re excited to stand with you to create the world we want for our own children: one where all people can build and maintain financial security through employment and educational opportunities, without having to sacrifice their health or their loved ones’ care.

With excitement, hope, and gratitude,

Liz Morris (she/her) & Jessica Lee (she/they)

Donate here to support WorkLife Law’s next chapter!

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