Worker Justice


We seek to address the vulnerability of US workers to abusive, illegal working conditions. While Wal-Mart and other company’s practices have been most highly publicized, the business and legal environment that favors its model has led to similar practices at many other employers.

Phyllis Jeden, Law Fellow and Tony Paris, Lead Attorney legal observing at a workers rights rally.

Sugar Law works with individuals, groups of employees, workers centers, and labor unions  to assist working people who seek enforcement of employment laws.  Our Center has acted as a call-in resource center to provide employment rights information to workers from large corporations, filed small claims on behalf of individuals, litigated large claims on behalf of thousands of workers, drafted and distributed issue briefs to legislative decision makes, testified at hearings before all levels of government, and provided support at marches and protests where workers are seeking justice from the public, their employers, and corporate shareholders.  In these and many other ways, our work challenges injustice and seeks to vindicate the rights of workers.

In each instance, the Law Center assesses workers’ experiences for potentially actionable claims arising from violation of employment rights and evaluate those experiences to consider nontraditional strategies and policy advocacy that can help the individual while advancing systemic change.  Project objectives include:

    • providing direct legal representation where possible,
    • empowering workers to raise workplace issues without retribution from employers or government,
    • promoting civic engagement on workplace issues, and
    • disseminating information on employee rights and systemic abuses. 

Rally for living wage ordinance.

Sugar Law works not only with groups of workers and individuals but also provides support to and collaborates with a wide range of workers rights advocates. Danielle Atkinson of Mother Justice notes “From when Mothering Justice first launched its paid sick days campaign in 2011, Sugar Law Center has been an extremely helpful resource for our work; including legal, strategic and fundraising advice. As a small, emerging grassroots entity, we are very grateful for Sugar Law’s presence, insight and concrete assistance regarding the challenges we face.”  William Bryce, Organizer South East Michigan Jobs with Justice states “SEMJWJ’s growth and recent successes have been helped by Sugar Law’s invaluable organizational and legal expertise. Mobilizing new or experienced activists, whether for civil disobedience or picket lines, is always easier when we can tell people Sugar Law has our back.”

For more information on our Wage Justice project see here and for for more information on our Worksite Closings, Layoffs and Job Loss project see here.

If you have suffered a violation of your rights or are working with others who may have, please do not hesitate to call our office at (313) 993-4505 or email us to see if our office might be able to help.  Please note that we are not, and should not be viewed as, your attorneys in any matter for which you contact our offices or in any legal proceedings until we formally agree to represent you.