Just in time for the holidays, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) and the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) have delivered additional workplace protections for workers and prospective unions this month. Whether those government agencies are viewed as Santa or the Grinch coming down workplace chimneys depends upon one’s perspective.
Specifically, the NLRB gave a sugary treat to unions and employees who want union representation by ruling in early December that, under most circumstances, workers must be permitted to use their employers’ email systems for purposes of union-organizing activities. Then, in mid-December, the NLRB stuffed the stockings of unions and employees who desire union representation by issuing a final rule shortening the time to hold an election to determine whether a majority of workers want to be unionized.
Many employers worry that this speedy-election change, which becomes effective on April 14, 2015, will diminish management’s ability to stage an anti-union campaign prior to voting. As such, employers who are concerned about unionization likely will focus on year-round anti-union avoidance programs, instead of anti-union campaigns that commence only upon the filing of a representation petition.
Continue Reading U.S. Government Agencies: Santa or Grinch?