2020 Oct 26

State AGs Protecting Workers' Rights Roundtable

1:00pm to 2:00pm


online via Zoom

On Monday, October 26 at 1 pm EST we hosted a virtual roundtable discussion on how state attorneys general have been taking action to protect workers. We were joined by:

D.C.  Attorney General  Karl Racine Illinois  Attorney General  Kwame Raoul Minnesota Attorney General  Keith Ellison Pennsylvania Attorney General  Josh Shapiro Terri Gerstein,  Harvard LWP

D.C. Attorney General
Karl Racine

Attorney General
Kwame Raoul

Attorney General
Keith Ellison

Attorney General
Josh Shapiro

Terri Gerstein,
Harvard LWP

In recent years, there has been a surge of activity by a number of state attorneys general in protecting workers’ rights. As detailed in a recent report issued by the Economic Policy Institute and the Harvard Labor and Worklife Program, state AGs have:

  • Brought civil lawsuits and criminally prosecuted employers for wage theft;
  • Combatted no-poach and non-compete agreements, which suppress wages/job mobility;
  • Fought misclassification of workers as independent contractors instead of employees;
  • Opposed and challenged anti-worker rules proposed by the U.S. Department of Labor; and
  • Taken action on behalf of workers during the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • Since 2015, six AG offices, including those of our speakers, have established units within their offices dedicated to protecting workers.

View video of roundtable discussion.... Read more about State AGs Protecting Workers' Rights Roundtable

2019 Feb 11

James Green Forum -“Struggle for the Soul of the Postwar South: Organizing Workers in the Southern USA”

4:00pm to 5:30pm


WCC 2019 Milstein West AB, Harvard Law School

James Green Forum 2019Speakers: Elizabeth Fones-Wolf, Professor, West Virginia University and Ken Fones-Wolf, Professor, Stuart and Joyce Robbins Chair, West Virginia University
Commenter: Sister Marie-Therese Browne, Sisters of Charity of Nazareth, Kentucky... Read more about James Green Forum -“Struggle for the Soul of the Postwar South: Organizing Workers in the Southern USA”

Breached Podcast Logo

Breached Podcast on Employment

April 25, 2018

This episode explores what a social contract of employment looks like, given the changing nature of work in the 21st century economy. We hear from Tom Kochan, a professor at MIT Sloan School of Management; Oren Cass, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute; Steven Pedigo, an assistant professor at the NYU School of Professional Studies; and Sharon Block, Executive Director of the Labor and Worklife Program at Harvard Law School.

[Listen to Podcast]
More information on Podcast Series at  OnLabor logo

2018 Apr 04

Labor Problem: Can We Create Just Supply Chains in the Global Economy?



Wiener Auditorium, Taubman Building, Harvard Kennedy School

Please join us for the first Pollak Lecture Series event of 2018. Richard M. Locke, Provost and Schreiber Family Professor of Political Science and Public and International Affairs at Brown University, will speak. Marshall Ganz, Senior Lecturer in Public Policy, will provide an introduction. 

Co-sponsored by:  by Harvard Kennedy School Alumni Relations and Resource Development. The Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, Carr Center for Human Rights, Labor and Worklife Program at Harvard Law School, Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy, and the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business & Government are co-sponsors. 

2018 Apr 25

Equal Pay Act @ 55: Successes, Challenges & Momentum

10:00am to 12:00pm


WCC 2019 Milstein West A, Harvard Law School

event poster

Registration 9:30am | Program 10:00am – 12:00pm

It’s been 55 years since the passage of the Equal Pay Act, so where are we now? Join HLS Labor & Worklife Program and Equal Employment Opportunity Commissioner Charlotte Burrows for a panel discussion that explores the state of equal pay, its successes, challenges and momentum. The panel includes diverse leading perspectives from academia, business leaders, enforcement, and advocacy. The opening keynote is Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey.

Please RSVP at




2017 Dec 01

Innovative Approaches to Migrant Worker Advocacy

12:00pm to 1:00pm


Harvard Law School, WCC 3018

A talk with Mervat Jumhawee, El Hassan Workers’ Center (Jordan)
JJ Rosenbaum, Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School, will moderate the event.

Join us for a conversation on migrant workers’ rights in Jordan’s garment sector in the free trade zones with Mervat Jumhawee, Advocacy Officer for the El Hassan Workers’ Center. [Download Flyer]... Read more about Innovative Approaches to Migrant Worker Advocacy

2011 Feb 10

"Raising Our Sights: Fighting for a Progressive Vision in Sharply Contested Terrain"

4:00pm to 6:00pm

    Miles Rapoport
Miles Rapoport
President of Demos  
Paul Booth
Paul Booth
Executive Assistant
to the President, AFSCME

Opening Remarks by Paul Booth, Executive Assistant to the President, AFSCME:"Miles Rapoport is the president of Demos. What is Demos? There is an awful lot of Demos material out on the table there, and you really should indulge freely in it. To me, Demos is simply the leading voice in the United States for small d democracy. Its mission, as I see it, is this cause which it so
ably advances.

Miles Rapoport has a career that included personal involvement in Connecticut politics, to which he brought activism, organizational skills, and a set of real deep commitments."

Brochure of full transcript: [Download]

1984 Nov 01

“Employment and Welfare”

4:00pm to 6:00pm

Olof Palme
Olof Palme,
Swedish Prime Minister

"Some time ago in Vienna, I had the opportunity to hear Dr. Bruno Kreisky's speech when he retired as chancellor and leader of the Austrian Social Democratic Party. As we in the audience sat there listening, we expected to hear an account of his long and eventful life and of his wide-ranging and successful political experiences. But not at all! Bruno Kreisky talked only about the future. At his retirement from official life, the whole of his thinking was looking forward..."

Brochure of transcript [Download]

1989 Nov 01

"The Changing Role of the Union and Competitiveness"

4:00pm to 6:00pm

Keynote Address: "The Changing Role of the Union and Competitiveness"
Donald Ephlin
International Vice President and Director of the
General Motors Department, United Auto Workers

William Lucy
International Secretary-Treasurer, American
Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees

Postscript I: Lessons Learned
Linda Kaboolian
Research Fellow in the Center for Business
and Government, John F. Kennedy
School of Government, Harvard University

Postscript II: The Forces Driving Change
Kim Clark
Professor of Business Administration,
Harvard Business School

Brochure of Transcript [Download]

2001 Oct 04

"The Strength of America"

4:00pm to 6:00pm

Al Gore

Honorable Albert J. Gore

Opening Remarks by Lawrence H. Summers, President, Harvard University: 
 " Al Gore is going to speak to us about the strength of America. In a moment, I want to say a few words about the strength of Al Gore but, before I do, I want to say a few words about public service. I want to recognize Jerry Wurf, someone I knew well as his family vacationed near mine in Wellfleet, Massachusetts and someone who I admired for his commitment to doing the right thing by the people he represented and doing the right thing by this country. Jerry made what I think is a point that none of us at the university can make often enough or strongly enough and that is the importance of public service. There was only one group of people who were going up the stairs in the World Trade Center on September 11 and those were public servants. Public servants. People who are paid by taxes. People who were workers in the government of New York City, workers in the government of New York State and workers in the government of the United States. Anyone who wants to say that government work is wrong or that government is wrong or that government is bad should think about those people going up those stairs at that moment."

Brochure of transcript [Download]

2003 Oct 07

"The Future of the Democratic Party and the Latino Vote"

4:00pm to 6:00pm

Bill Richardson

Bill Richardson
Governor of New Mexico
Introductions and Opening Remarks by: Elena Kagan
Harvard Law School,
Harvard University

Gerald McEntee
American Federation of
State, County and
Municipal Employees

Opening Remarks by Elena Kagan, Dean, Harvard Law School:
" This is a great privilege for us. Actually, before I say anything else I'd like to welcome Jerry Wurf's family: Mildred Wurf and his children, Abigail and Nick Wurf. We are extremely pleased that you could join us today.
    For those of you who don't know, Jerry Wurf was the seventh president of AFSCME, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, which is now one of the biggest unions in America. Most of that union's great growth, really its coming into being as a major force in the union movement, took place under Jerry Wurf, who was really one of the great modern labor leaders."

Brochure of Transcript [Download]

2012 Feb 09

“She Was One of Us: Eleanor Roosevelt and the American Worker”

4:00pm to 6:00pm

Brigid O’Farrell
Brigid O’Farrell
Mills College
Elissa McBride
Elissa McBride
Director of Education and
Leadership Training, AFSCME

Opening Remarks by Elissa McBride, Director of Education and Leadership Training, AFSCME:
"Like Eleanor, [Brigid] knows that we can make real change if we link education and action. I hope you will listen, learn, and leave committed to honor the legacy of Jerry Wurf and Eleanor Roosevelt by passing on the knowledge you gain here to others, so that together, we can restore the right to organize and bargain for all workers – public and private."

Brochure of full transcript: [Download]