Obama Administration and NLRB:
Advocates for unionization
ince President Obama’s election and
his recess appointment of two pro-labor advocates to the National Labor
Relations Board, a number of pro-labor
initiatives have been presented as proposed
legislation or regulation. Most recently, a
proposed rule by the NLRB shortens the
time frame for union election campaigns to
as little as 10 days from the ;ling of a Notice
‘Card check’ would have ended
The most egregious of the legislative
initiatives was the March 10, 2009, reintroduction of the Employee Free Choice
Act. Among other issues, the EFCA, also
known as “card check,” would have allowed
a union to be certi;ed as the of;cial union to
bargain with an employer if union of;cials
collect signatures of a majority of workers.
The bill would have removed the present right
of the employer to demand an additional,
separate secret ballot vote and may have led
to coercion and intimidation of employees to
sign an authorization card.
In addition, the bill would require mandatory arbitration if the parties were unable to
agree on the terms of a collective bargaining
agreement within 120 days following certi;-cation of the union. Fortunately, this bill did
not have enough support to pass the 60-vote,
super-majority requirement in the Senate and
has not been enacted.
NLRB requires pro-union
In the past year, the NLRB proposed two
regulations that will bene;t union efforts to
organize employees. On December 22, 2010,
a new requirement for a workplace poster,
advising employees of their right to organize,
was proposed. Despite considerable opposition from business, including a February 16,
2011 comment letter from USPOULTRY, the
National Chicken Council, and the National
Turkey Federation (see Position Papers on our
website, www.poultryegg.org) arguing that
the poster notice exceeds NLRB’s authority
and the proposed language in the poster is
heavily slanted toward the pro-union view,
the poster requirement are scheduled to
become effective January 31, 2012.
Quick elections now proposed
Paul Pressley, is the executive vice
president of industry programs at U.S.
Poultry & Egg Association.