Is There a Right to Job Quality? Reenvisioning Workforce Development

10 Pages Posted: 10 Jul 2020 Last revised: 12 Aug 2020

See all articles by Jonathan F. Harris

Jonathan F. Harris

LMU Loyola Law School

Livia Lam

Center for American Progress

Date Written: July 6, 2020


The coronavirus crisis has led to the unemployment of millions of workers and exposed a labor market that is full of poor-quality jobs. Policymakers intuitively resort to upgrading worker skills as a workforce response to the pandemic; however, the problem isn’t with retraining. The nation’s workforce development system is in shambles. It lacks appropriate accountability mechanisms to ensure workers are matched to decent work and instead steers training for any in-demand job including those that offer low pay and poor working conditions. Enabling the changes needed requires a new legal regime that establishes a right to training for a quality job.

Keywords: employment law, employee benefits, labor law, personnel economics, economic perspectives, workforce development, training, legal theory

JEL Classification: J00, J2, J3, J4, J5, J6, M5

Suggested Citation

Harris, Jonathan and Lam, Livia, Is There a Right to Job Quality? Reenvisioning Workforce Development (July 6, 2020). 11 California Law Review Online 339 (2020), Available at SSRN: or

Jonathan Harris (Contact Author)

LMU Loyola Law School ( email )

919 Albany Street
Los Angeles, CA 90015-1211
United States

Livia Lam

Center for American Progress ( email )

805 15th Street, NW
Suite 400
Washington, DC 20005
United States

Do you have negative results from your research you’d like to share?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics