J. Crew, Urban Outfitters, and More Just Stopped Using ‘On-Call’ Scheduling

“The abandonment of on-call at these high-profile chains—affecting roughly 239,000 retail sales workers, according to the Fair Workweek Initiative—represents growing backlash against the erosion of workers’ autonomy in low-wage service sectors. The pressure for reform has been stoked by media scrutiny, labor protests, and litigation, and an investigation into on-call scheduling in New York retail stores by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman …

“ The byzantine, unstable scheduling systems that dominate low-wage industries aren’t really “the nature” of today’s jobs so much as the result of a society that deeply undervalues workers’ lives, whether that’s the value of a parent’s time with her children, or the time invested in a college degree. In a “just in time” economy, employers put a premium on consumer convenience and business logistics. But as boundaries blur between work and home, the “new economy” challenges workers to finally reclaim their stolen time.”

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