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Employee Rights and Employment Policy Journal

Volume 1 1997 Number 1


[P.xi]Another law journal! With the recent proliferation of law re-views, any new entrant bears a heavy burden of justification. As co-editors of Employee Rights and Employment Policy Journal, we be-lieve we have met that burden.

Our journal's editorial mission is to publish articles containing di-verse perspectives on legal and law related policy issues focused on the well being of employees in the workplace. No other law journal, including the very few specialized labor and employment law journals, has, as its editorial focus, employee well being. Yet, the central ques-tion in most workplace discussions should be what is in the best inter-est of employees. We believe that this journal makes a major contribution by focusing the scholarly debate on this central question.

Employee Rights and Employment Policy Journal is interdiscipli-nary in approach and is designed to appeal to the academic and prac-ticing professional communities. Furthermore, the Journal is peer reviewed and peer edited. We are fortunate to have an editorial board of academic leaders in the field. A student editorial board as-sists in the production process, but all substantive editorial decisions are made through the peer review and peer editing process with input from a diverse advisory board of practicing lawyers.

This inaugural issue exemplifies the strength of our approach. The articles are diverse in viewpoint, discipline, and research method-ology. They include traditional legal scholarship by Matthew Finkin, dealing with the scope of employer privilege in communicating the fact of and reasons for an employee's discharge, and Ramona Paetzold, dealing with same sex sexual harassment. There are two empirical surveys: the first by David Linowes and Ray Spencer, sur-veying corporate practices related to employee privacy; and the sec-ond by Holly Thompson and Jon Werner, surveying employer implementation of the Family and Medical Leave Act. Paul Mollica's article on the employment discrimination jurisprudence of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit combines empirical research with traditional legal analysis. Alfred and Ruth Blumrosen preview a major piece of legal scholarship on downsizing which will be published in the next issue of the journal. Lisa Bingham and Susan FitzGibbon provide diverse approaches to a critical issue affecting em-ployees: arbitration of statutory employment claims. Their articles are [P.xii]complemented by the 1997 proceedings of the Association of Ameri-can Law Schools Sections on Alternative Dispute Resolution and Em-ployment Discrimination Law dealing with arbitration of employment claim. Kenneth Dau-Schmidt closes with a review of the recently pub-lished book, The Case for Tenure.

There are many people and institutions whose contributions made this journal possible. We are grateful to the authors who were willing to trust their scholarship to the inaugural issue of a journal that sounded good in theory but had yet to be tested. We thank the mem-bers of the editorial board who gave of their time, energy and wisdom to the reviewing and editing processes. We thank the members of the advisory board for helpful suggestions and support. We acknowledge the efforts of our student editors who handled so many of the tedious, but very necessary, tasks of the production process.

Finally, we gratefully acknowledge the support of the two institu-tions that are co-publishing the journal. This inaugural issue is a trib-ute to Chicago-Kent College of Law and the National Employee Rights Institute (NERI). The journal continues Chicago-Kent's tradi-tion of innovation in legal education. The journal reflects NERI's high level of integrity and dedication to the interests of employees. As the NERI statement following Professor FitzGibbon's article makes clear, the article takes a position markedly opposed by the plaintiff's bar and NERI. However, the article, like all other articles in this journal, is focused on the issue of what policies and doctrines are in the best interests of employees. We applaud NERI's support for this journal as a forum which focuses the debate on what is best for employees, and includes the expression of views which are inconsis-tent with the vigorously held positions of NERI and the plaintiff's bar.

As you peruse the articles which follow, we believe you will agree that he have met our burden of justification for another law journal. We welcome commentaries and replies to any articles published in the journal and look forward to carrying out the journal's editorial mis-sion.

Martin H. Malin
Douglas D. Scherer


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