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Labor Relations Today

Category Archives: NLRA

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NLRB Finds An Ally: Seventh Circuit Invalidates an Arbitration Agreement’s Class and Collective Action Waiver

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, NLRA, NLRB
On May 26, 2016, the Seventh Circuit issued its decision in Lewis v. Epic Systems Corporation, Case No. 15-2997, holding that an arbitration agreement providing “that covered claims will be arbitrated only on an individual basis” and that employees “waive the right to participate in or receive money or any other relief from any class, collective,… Continue Reading

The Battle Over the Status of Uber and Lyft Drivers Continues

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, NLRA, State/Local Issues, Unfair Labor Practices
Uber and Lyft have seen a number of attacks challenging the status of their independently contracted drivers in an effort to force both companies to reclassify and/or treat their drivers as employees. A recent example was a local ordinance enacted in Seattle, Washington, allowing drivers working for ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft the right to unionize. Specifically, the ordinance,… Continue Reading

Electrical Subcontractor Cannot Catch a Break from the Eighth Circuit

Posted in Duty to Bargain, Federal Court Litigation, NLRA, NLRB, Unfair Labor Practices
On February 9, 2016, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals held that National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) properly concluded that an electrical subcontractor violated the National Labor Relations Act when it unilaterally changed its employee break policy without affording the employees’ union an opportunity to bargain over the change. Parsons Electric, LLC v. NLRB,… Continue Reading

Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals Overrules National Labor Relations Board; Holds That Stagehands Are Independent Contractors, Not Employees

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, NLRA, NLRB
Vacating a National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) decision that a stagehand referral service violated the National Labor Relations Act by refusing to bargain with its stagehands’ union representative, on February 3, 2016, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals held that the stagehands were independent contractors and not employees of the referral service.  In Crew… Continue Reading

Arizona Federal Court Grants § 10(j) Injunctive Relief to Stop Employer’s Alleged Labor Law Violations

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, NLRA, Unfair Labor Practices
In a April 30, 2014 General Counsel Memorandum, National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) General Counsel Richard Griffin declared that his office would expand the pursuit of injunctions in federal court against employers in connection with union organizing and bargaining efforts. In particular, the Memorandum directed the Board’s regional offices to pursue aggressively § 10(j)… Continue Reading

Tenth Circuit Affirms National Labor Relations Board’s Decision to Disregard Interim Earnings When Calculating Backpay Award.

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, NLRA, Remedies
On January 20, 2016, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the National Labor Relations Board’s (the “Board”) decision to disregard interim earnings when calculating the backpay awards for employees whose injuries fell short of unlawful termination. NLRB v. Community Health Services, Inc., No. 14-9614 (10th Cir. Jan. 20, 2016).  Rejecting the employer’s argument that… Continue Reading

Professors Petition NLRB to Grant Unions Right to Hold Captive Audience Meetings During Organizing Campaigns

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Rule-Making, Representation Elections, Special Interests
On January 15, 2016, more than 100 professors from about 70 universities filed a rulemaking petition with the National Labor Relations Board requesting that the Board adopt a rule providing that where an employer holds “captive audience meetings” to express opposition to unionization, the union has a right upon request to equivalent access to address employees.… Continue Reading

Labor Relations Today Issues ‘Labor Law 2015: Year in Review’

Posted in Alternative Labor Law Reform, Beyond EFCA: Labor's Agenda, Bush Board Reversal, Card Check, Department of Labor, Executive Orders, Expedited Elections, Federal Court Litigation, Government Contracts, House of Representatives, Joint Employer, Legislation, Micro Units, Negotiations, NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Administration, NLRB Decisions, NLRB Rule-Making, Remedies, Representation Elections, SCOTUS, Senate, Social Media, Unfair Labor Practices, Unions, White House
McGuireWoods labor attorneys and the editors of Labor Relations Today are pleased to announce the publication of Labor Law 2015: A Year In Review. For most of 2015, the National Labor Relations Board consisted of five members and the general counsel — all Senate-confirmed. This Board and the White House continued aggressive efforts to overhaul traditional labor law administratively,… Continue Reading

Board Finds Rule Prohibiting Recordings in the Workplace Unlawful

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions
Keeping with its trend of invalidating common workplace rules, the National Labor Relations Board, in a 2-1 decision issued on December 24, 2015 in Whole Foods Market, Inc., 363 NLRB No. 87, found that an employer’s rule prohibiting recording of company meetings or conversations in the workplace violated Section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations… Continue Reading

District of Columbia Court of Appeals Orders Reinstatement of Striking Employees

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, NLRA
On November 13, 2015, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (the “Court”) affirmed a National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) order requiring a concrete company to reinstate striking workers. Spurlino Materials, LLC v. NLRB, Case Nos. 12-1034 and 12-1123 (D.C. Cir. Nov. 13, 2015).  The Court’s decision highlights the… Continue Reading

NLRB Considers Whether to Overrule 11-Year Old Precedent Holding That Graduate Students Are Not Employees Under the NLRA

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions
Earlier this month, we posted about a Regional Director’s dismissal of a petition filed by an organizing committee of the United Auto Workers (UAW) seeking to represent various student assistants at Columbia University in New York.  The UAW has filed a request for review in that case which is currently pending before National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).  In a… Continue Reading

NLRB Regional Director Dismisses Petition by Union Seeking to Represent University Student Teaching and Research Assistants

Posted in Bush Board Reversal, NLRA, NLRB Decisions, Representation Elections
On October 30, 2015, the Regional Director for Region 2 of the National Labor Relations Board dismissed a petition filed by an organizing committee of the United Auto Workers (UAW) seeking to represent various student assistants at Columbia University in New York.  In Columbia University, Case No. 02-RC-143012, the Union sought to represent a unit of [a]ll student… Continue Reading

Photo Identification Required: Administrative Law Judge Finds Union’s Rule on Resignations Facially Lawful

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, Unions
On October 26, 2015, Administrative Law Judge David I. Goldman (“ALJ Goldman”) held that a union did not violate federal labor law by maintaining a rule requiring that members wishing to resign or to revoke a dues check-off do so in person at a union hall with a photo ID and a written request.  Local… Continue Reading

House Bill Aims To Reverse NLRB’s Expanded “Joint Employer” Definition

Posted in House of Representatives, Joint Employer, Legislation, NLRA, NLRB
On October 28, 2015, the House Committee on Education and the Workforce met to mark up the Protecting Local Business Opportunity Act (H.R. 3459)—a bill designed to curtail the National Labor Relations Board’s recent expansion of “joint employer” under the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”). As previously discussed, the NLRB’s Browning Ferris Industries decision dramatically… Continue Reading

Fifth Circuit Reverses Board Decision on Lawfulness of Arbitration Agreements Once Again

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions, Uncategorized, Unfair Labor Practices
In Murphy Oil USA, Inc. v. National Labor Relations Board, a three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit again held, contrary to the NLRB, that an employer does not commit an unfair labor practice by requiring its employees to sign arbitration agreements.  In doing so, the Fifth Circuit followed… Continue Reading

Another Facebook Victory for Employees—Second Circuit Concludes Facebook “Likes” May Be Protected by Labor Law

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, NLRA, NLRB, Social Media
Regular readers of this blog are well-aware that employee social media activity has been and continues to be a hot-button topic for the National Labor Relations Board. Cases involving Facebook and other social media posts rarely end well for employers (see here, here, and here), and the Second Circuit Court Appeals’ October 21, 2015 decision in… Continue Reading

More About Sen. Bernie Sanders’ Card Check Proposal

Posted in Card Check, EFCA, Interest Arbitration, Legislation, NLRA, Representation Elections, Senate, White House
On Tuesday, presidential candidate and current Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) announced that he, and ten Senate co-sponsors, would introduce the Workplace Democracy Act (S. 2142). The bill — a verbatim reiteration of two provisions of the Employee Free Choice Act in the 110th & 111th Congresses — would: certify a union as the exclusive bargaining… Continue Reading

Senator Sanders (I/D-VT) Re-Introduces Employee Free Choice Act

Posted in Card Check, EFCA, House of Representatives, Interest Arbitration, Legislation, NLRA, Remedies, Representation Elections, Senate, White House
At a press conference on the afternoon of Tuesday, October 6, 2015, Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont announced that he and Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) would introduce the “Workplace Democracy Act” (S. 2142, H.R. 3690). This bill would amend the National Labor Relations Act to facilitate union organizing by requiring certification based on “card check” —… Continue Reading

National Labor Relations Board General Counsel Finds Company’s Lockout Lawful

Posted in Negotiations, NLRA, Unions
In a letter to United Steelworkers Union’s (“USW”) in-house counsel, National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) General Counsel Richard Griffin (“Mr. Griffin”) stated that a company did not violate federal labor law by locking out approximately 450 USW-represented employees during ongoing collective bargaining negotiations. The lockout, which began in October 2014, occurred after bargaining unit employees… Continue Reading

Board Finds That Canvassers Are Employees, Reversing ALJ

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions
Further crystalizing the Board’s efforts to expand the definition of “employee” under the NLRA, the Board recently reversed an ALJ’s decision, holding that canvassers for a non-profit organization were employees, not independent contractors. In Sisters Camelot, 363 NLRB No. 13 (Sep. 25, 2015), a canvasser filed a charge alleging that he was terminated for engaging… Continue Reading

More About the Protecting American Jobs Act (S. 2084)

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, House of Representatives, Legislation, NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Administration, NLRB Rule-Making, Senate
As noted yesterday, Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) has introduced a bill to curtail the authority of the National Labor Relations Board.  The Protecting American Jobs Act (S. 2084) — co-sponsored by Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Tom Cotton (R-AR) — is analogous to a House bill (H.R. 1893) introduced earlier in 2015, now with seventy… Continue Reading

Senator Alexander Accuses NLRB, OSHA of Coordinated Effort to Change the Law

Posted in Joint Employer, Legislation, NLRA, NLRB, Senate
On September 23, 2015, Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) stepped up his attacks on the National Labor Relations Board (“the Board”), accusing the Board of engaging in a coordinated effort with the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (“OSHA”) to change corporate liability laws.  During a hearing, Senator Alexander referred to news reports claiming that OSHA officials… Continue Reading

Quick Hits: Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, Quick Hits, Unions, White House
Walker Out:  Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker (R) announced yesterday that he was withdrawing from the race for the GOP’s 2016 nomination for the presidency.  Walker, who famously clashed with labor unions in his home state, last week unveiled an outline of his policy proposals on labor law reform. They included: eliminating the NLRB; passing a national… Continue Reading

Quick Hits: Monday, September 21, 2015

Posted in Beyond EFCA: Labor's Agenda, Media Round-Up, NLRA, NLRB Decisions, Quick Hits
ICYMI — Dems Intro “WAGE” Act: We reported last week on the drastic legislative proposal introduced to increase NLRB penalties against employers, to facilitate union organizing. In addition to our summary piece and this document including proposed changes to the NLRA in redline, we provided links to some additional resources and coverage. Add to those, this Washington… Continue Reading