Researchers’ Privilege: Full Disclosure
Dr. Frank C. Woodside, III, & Michael J. Gray
With an ever-growing number of academic journals, there has been a corresponding increase in the number of reports that these journals are publishing articles based on questionable methodology. Many published studies contain improper statistical conclusions, flawed methodology, and results that cannot be replicated. Due to the spread of “pay-to-publish” and low-quality-academic journals, the epidemic of faulty research has become worse.
This Article analyzes how the so-called “researchers’ privilege” allows faulty research to go undetected and delineates the reasons why it is difficult to evaluate published research findings without access to the underlying-research information. Then this Article analyzes the law regarding researchers’ ability to withhold research information based on a “researchers’ privilege.” Finally, this Article addresses why the courts should favor disclosure with confidential information being addressed through confidentiality orders.
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows eligible employees to take unpaid leave to care for a spouse, child, or parent with a serious ailment. Courts have been particularly troubled when employees take leave to provide unconventional care. In these situations, courts frequently interpret FMLA-authorized care narrowly and deprive coverage accordingly. Narrow interpretation disregards the intent of the FMLA: to help working caregivers find balance between employment and family obligations.
This Comment endorses broad interpretation and proposes a newly-crafted, three-part test for courts to apply when analyzing FMLA care. This test requires an employee to prove that the family member in question had a time-sensitive medical need, that the employee’s activity was performed with intent to serve that medical need, and that the employee did confer a likely benefit to the family member related to that need. This new approach evaluates FMLA care more thoroughly and generates more comprehensive coverage for employees, which will better effectuate FMLA-policy goals.
Human trafficking is modern-day slavery. Awareness and activism for human-trafficking victims has increased in the past decade, but one group of victims is consistently overlooked: the children born to sex-trafficking victims. No laws or resources are committed to specifically addressing these children’s needs. Traditional resources that many single mothers depend on for child support are often inaccessible to human-trafficking victims: the most prevalent is support payments. Victims service an average of 10 to 15 people who pay for sex (“Johns”) each day. This makes it nearly impossible to establish a child’s paternity, which is required to collect child-support payments. Even in the unlikely event that paternity can be established, the probability that a victim will be able to enforce a court-ordered judgment against a John is slight.
This Comment addresses federal and state legislative acts with an emphasis on Florida’s state laws. Reforming forfeited-asset legislation in Florida can create an accessible, viable, and self-sustaining resource for sex-trafficking victims with children. This Comment advocates developing specific legal remedies that will better address the needs of human-trafficking victims and their children.