by Jeff Sovern
The report is titled Where White Men Rule: How the Secretive System of Forced Arbitration Hurts Women and Minorities. CNBC has a story here. Here's an excerpt from the report:
Arbitrators in consumer and employment cases are mostly male and overwhelmingly white. At AAA and JAMS, the two largest consumer and employment arbitration providers in the country, 88% of arbitrators are white and 77% are male.
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Trust in the civil justice system is enhanced when the public sees that the judges deciding their cases reflect the diverse racial, ethnic, and cultural background of American society. As such, there have been, and continue to be, significant efforts to increase diversity in the federal judiciary. But the arbitration world is far behind even the judiciary. * * *
Federal and state courts face similar issues with regard to diversity but there is one major difference in arbitration. In the courts, whatever the race of the judge, a plaintiff can still face a jury. In arbitration, the arbitrator is judge and jury.[Disclosure: AAJ gave St. John's University a grant to fund some of my research about half a dozen years ago.]