Corporations were contrite in 2018. Many spent millions of dollars studying how to apologize and running advertising campaigns to say sorry to Americans for defrauding customers and investors, failing to protect sensitive personal information, and failing to create workplaces where sexual harassment is not tolerated. But do these apologies lead to meaningful changes to improve the quality and safety of the products and services provided?
AAJ’s new report, Worst Corporate Conduct of 2018, examines how civil justice is the most powerful tool to hold corporations and institutions accountable when they cause harm. From the energy companies who spent decades denying their role in climate change, to a university and sports program that for years protected a pedophile instead of students and athletes, institutions have shown time and again they will not act in the public’s best interest unless something forces them to. In these cases, and others involving unscrupulous student lenders, defective airbags, child slave labor, and corporate attempts to rig justice, the civil justice system has allowed Americans to hold bad actors accountable and change the way they do business.