Panel: Understanding the Effects of Local Schedule Stability Laws in Employers, Workers, and Families
(Employment and Training Programs)

Saturday, November 10, 2018: 1:30 PM-3:00 PM
8209 - Lobby Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Panel Chairs:  Anna Gassman-Pines, Duke University
Discussants:  Heather D. Hill, University of Washington

The Stable Scheduling Study: Cross-Sector Implications for Improving Scheduling Practices in Low-Wage Jobs
Susan Lambert, University of Chicago and Joan C Williams, University of California

Evaluating Seattle’s Secure Scheduling Ordinance: Effects on Work Schedule Predictability and Stability in the Retail and Food Service Industries
Daniel Schneider1, Kristen Harknett2 and Veronique Irwin1, (1)University of California, Berkeley, (2)University of California, San Francisco

Managers’ Implementation of Scheduling Legislation: The Case of Seattle
Susan Lambert, University of Chicago and Anna Haley, Rutgers University

Regulation and legal standards played a large role in shaping today’s workplaces, through minimum wages and workplace safety requirements, among others, and led to current U.S. norms around schedules, like the 8-hour workday. But in recent years, labor-market regulation has included little attention to schedules, despite dramatic shifts in the nature of work schedules. While earlier schedule regulations focused on preventing employers from extracting too much labor from workers, many workers today instead fear too much variability in work and pay. Schedule stability legislation (SSL) represent an innovational shift for local labor regulation, as several U.S. cities – including Seattle, WA and Emeryville, CA – have recent passed laws addressing these new work schedule issues.


This panel has great potential to fill gaps in the current law and social science literature and advance knowledge among legal scholars, social scientists, and policymakers, by providing critical information about the impact of SSL on employer behavior affecting the day-to-day work experiences and well-being of workers, and the effects of schedule instability on the behavior of low-wage workers and their families. The papers each test whether SSL achieves its intended goal of reducing involuntary work schedule instability. The Schneider et al. paper examines work conditions using a difference-in-difference approach in Seattle, WA. The Ananat and Gassman-Pines paper examines work conditions and family functioning through a combined daily diary and difference-in-difference approach in Emeryville, CA. The Lambert and Haley paper examines how managers have tried to implement SSL-compliant scheduling practices through surveys and in-depth interviews. By combining evidence from these three complementary studies, the panel will shed light on whether a novel type of local regulation can improve worker and family outcomes by improving previously unregulated aspects of working conditions. This set of papers provide the first evaluations of local schedule stability legislation. Findings will inform policymaking in other cities that are considering such legislation.

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