District Attorney Launches New Economic Crimes Unit to Protect Workers' Rights
News from the Office of San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin
April 21, 2020
CONTACT: Rachel Marshall/ (415) 416-4468 / Rachel.Marshall@sfgov.org
DISTRICT ATTORNEY LAUNCHES NEW ECONOMIC CRIMES UNIT TO PROTECT WORKERS’ RIGHTS
San Francisco, CA — Today, San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin announces the launch of a new Economic Crimes Against Workers Unit within the DA’s office to investigate and prosecute crimes committed by employers against workers. The innovative unit, one of the first of its kind in the nation, will be led by Assistant District Attorney and Labor Liaison Scott Stillman, who has dedicated his legal career to protecting workers’ rights.
“I am proud to establish this new unit, which will safeguard the rights of some of the most vulnerable people in our society: workers who are being exploited by their employers,” said DA Boudin. “I promised during my campaign that we would create this unit for those workers who far too frequently feel powerless in the justice system—and with a lengthy track record of fighting for employment justice, ADA Stillman is the perfect lawyer to protect their rights.”
The Economic Crimes Against Workers Unit will focus on crimes such as wage theft, labor trafficking, criminal immigration-related workplace retaliation, and enforcement of California’s Unfair Competition Laws. It will seek to partner with state and local civil enforcement agencies to advance worker protections.
ADA Scott Stillman has spent his legal career fighting for justice on behalf of workers. He comes to the DA’s Office after ten years at McGuinn, Hillsman & Palefsky, where he was a partner. There, he represented workers in a wide variety of cases, including wage and hour disputes, discrimination, retaliation, sexual harassment, and wrongful termination cases. ADA Stillman also served as a member of the Diversity Committees of the California Employment Lawyers Association and the Executive Committee of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the California Lawyers Association. ADA Stillman earned his J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law and his B.A. from Stanford University.
“Throughout my career, I have seen the tremendous and too-often unchecked power that employers can hold over their workers,” said ADA Stillman. “I am eager to harness the resources of the DA’s Office to ensure that employees know their legal rights and that corporations are held accountable when those rights are violated.” He plans to collaborate with labor unions and community-based groups to help achieve these goals.
DA Boudin’s creation of the unit was heralded by labor leaders. “We applaud DA Boudin’s leadership and commitment to using the power of the prosecutor’s office to enforce laws that protect workers’ rights,” said Rudy Gonzalez, Executive Director of the San Francisco Labor Council, AFL-CIO, which represents over 100,000 union members and their families. “We are looking forward to working together with ADA Stillman and the DA’s office to advance justice for workers and the labor community.”