October 07, 2019 Issue: October 2019

Message from the Chairs

Dear Friends and Colleagues:

Welcome to the latest edition of the newsletter of the ABA International Labor and Employment Law Committee, hot on the heels of the Transatlantic Conference in London co-organized by our Committee and the UK’s Employment Lawyers Association. It was a truly wonderful and well-attended event, with employment lawyers from across the UK, Europe and the U.S. We especially thank Mike Delikat, Wendi Lazar, and Maryann Parker for their Herculean efforts to deliver this very popular bi-annual conference on behalf of the International Committee, in collaboration with their UK ELA counterparts. This was the sixth bi-annual Transatlantic Conference between the ABA and ELA, and it reflects the International Committee’s focus on building long-term, strategic relationships with leading international employment law organizations for the benefit of our members.

Welcome, as well, to our newest co-chair, Jennifer “JJ” Rosenbaum of Global Labor Justice, whom many of you will know already. We are delighted that JJ has agreed to take up the International Committee’s union and employee co-chair role and very much look forward to working with her.

It means sadly, though, that we have had to say goodbye to Owen Herrnstadt, who stepped down as union and employee co-chair role after three years. Owen has been a terrific co-chair, supportive, collaborative and always rigorous to ensure that the important issues and voices of union lawyers and those they represent are properly reflected in the topics and panels developed by the International Committee. We thank Owen wholeheartedly for his service and support as co-chair.

We are looking forward to the ABA Annual LEL Conference in New Orleans, and in particular the three International Track panels, which have exceptional panelists from around the world who are leading experts in their area.  As a reminder, the topics and titles of the panels are as follows.  Please find the time to attend and support these excellent sessions and speakers:

  • Brave New World: NAFTA 2.0, BREXIT and Cross-Border Labor Migration - Thursday, November 7 from 11:30 am – 12:45 pm
  • Pay Equity Around the World: The Next Chapter of the #MeToo Movement - Thursday, November 7 from 2:30 – 3:45 pm.
  • Addressing Workplace Mental Health Issues Around the World - Friday, November 8 from 11:30 am – 12:45 pm.

In addition, the following programs should be of interest to International LEL practitioners, which are being presented as part of the Whistleblower and Immigration and Human Trafficking Tracks:

  • Whistleblower Laws and Issues from Across the Globe: It’s a Small World After All – Thursday, November 7 from 8:00 am – 9:15 am
  • Revisiting Creative Responses to Gender-Based Violence in the Workplace and in Global Supply Chains – Friday, November 8 from 2:15 pm – 3:45 pm

The ever-popular International LEL Committee Dinner will take place on Thursday, November 7 from 7:00 – 10:00 pm at Arnaud’s in the French Quarter, and it promises to be our best culinary experience yet! There are still sponsorship opportunities for the International LEL Committee Dinner, with ranges of sponsorship options to suit all sizes of budget. Those members who kindly confirm their sponsorship pledges to Brad Hoffman by October 15 will receive maximum publicity (and appreciation!). Please feel free to contact any of the co-chairs if you think you or your firm might like to be an International LEL Committee Dinner sponsor and would like to discuss this further.

Finally, we are very focused now on the planning for the International LEL Committee Midyear Meeting, which will take place from May 3-7, 2020 at the Ritz-Carlton Berlin. What distinguishes these ABA LEL International LEL Committee meetings from other international labor and employment events is the vast breadth of international expertise of attendees, the very substantive nature of the international and cross-border panel sessions (which are always very well attended), the broad church of voices and perspectives that are thoughtfully represented in those panels, and the wonderful opportunities to participate and to network with peers from around the world in a warm, relaxed and very welcoming environment. Please put the conference dates in your diary for May 3-7, 2020, and also please come to the International LEL Committee Business meeting in New Orleans on Thursday, November 7 at 5:15 pm, where we will be discussing panel topics for Berlin and welcome your ideas and input.

We look forward to seeing you in New Orleans next month!

Warm regards,

Katherine Blostein (Employee Co-chair), David Garland (Employer Co-Chair), Clare Murray (International Co-Chair) and Jennifer (JJ) Rosenbaum (Union & Employee Co-chair)