Monday, December 27, 2010

Note to employees: You have a right to unionize

Don't know how we missed this story, but last week the NLRB proposed that companies be required to tell their employees that they have the legal right to form a union.

According to The New York Times,
The National Labor Relations Board said on Tuesday (Dec. 21) that it would require companies to post notices on their bulletin boards — and perhaps send out e-mail— to inform employees of their right to unionize under federal law. A day earlier, the labor board’s acting general counsel said that he would push for stronger action to create a fair atmosphere for unionization drives, perhaps by letting unions post materials on a company’s bulletin board if a company was found to have committed serious violations during such a drive.
This could be good news, if the proposed requirement turns into an actual requirement.

The way it works is this:  The NLRB publishes the proposed rule in the Federal Register. People have 60 days to comment on it. The NLRB then takes into account all the comments and decides what to do. It could scrap the idea, change the proposal or decide the proposal is fine as is and declare it the new rule.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce will go ballistic. They're already suggesting that current enforcement of labor law is "strong" -- BWAAA-HAAAAA-HAAAAAA -- and that it's a "vague" and "arbitrary" idea that employers are to blame for declining union membership.

Stay tuned.