With the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) using recent cases to reverse key worker protections or push anti-worker policies, it’s time for unions to rethink their NLRB strategy.
In one recent case, the NLRB virtually eliminated the rights of organizers to talk to workers at snackbars and other areas open to the general public. In another, the NLRB ruled that off-duty employees who work for contractors have the right to access only those workplaces where they “regularly” and “exclusively” work.
In a third case, the NLRB made it easier for companies to block access for union representatives, requiring that the union provide proof the company allowed other outside organizations to engage in the same type of activities for the same purposes. For example, to show that the company unlawfully excluded boycotters, the union must prove that the company allowed other organizations to ask customers entering stores to boycott the company. A recent NLRB ruling also made it much harder to petition for elections in “micro units” such as small departments of a company.
The International’s Legal Department is here to help locals carefully consider whether to pursue unfair labor practice charges with the current NLRB. In today’s environment, unions must be mindful of recent rulings where the NLRB has actively sought to undermine worker protections and proceed with caution before bringing any new charges.
Similarly, unions should consider withdrawing or settling cases currently pending before the NLRB, an administrative law judge or a NLRB Regional Office for the same reasons.
If you have any questions, contact George Wiszynski in the International’s Legal Department at firstname.lastname@example.org.