ALJ Cites D.R. Horton To Strike Class Waiver: Kelly Knaub of Law360 ($$) writes that this past week, a National Labor Relations Board Administrative Law Judge held that an employer's mandatory arbitration agreement waiving class arbitration was in violation of the National Labor Relations Act. Alluding to the controversial D.R. Horton decision, the ALJ struck the arbitration agreement, holding that compelling employees to arbitrate their claims individually was an unfair labor practice.
“By enforcing the arbitration provisions set forth in the Comprehensive Agreement and Applicant’s Statement and Agreement by asserting them in litigation brought against the company in Gerardo Haro Guadarrama v. Nijjar Realty Inc. et al. by filing a petition to compel plaintiffs to individually arbitrate their class-wide wage and hour claims against the company, the company has engaged in unfair labor practices affecting commerce,” Judge Cates said.
The ALJ also shot down the employer's argument that the "opt-out" provision of the agreement rendered the waiver voluntary. We will keep you posted as to any appeals to the full Board.
Fast-Food Workers Strike Across Country: John Bacon of USA Today writes that fast-food workers in 100 cities across the country walked off the job yesterday in protest against what they consider to be substandard wages. The protesters, primarily affiliated with the Service Employees International Union, also hope to unionize fast-food employees. Currently, the employees' desires to have their wages raised is a non-starter because those costs would be passed onto the consumer. We will keep you posted, as these strikes will not be going away any time soon.
UIC Faculty Authorize Strike: Michelle Manchir of the Chicago Tribune reports that faculty at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) have voted to authorize a labor strike. However, union leaders have yet to set a strike date. Instead, they have vowed to continue negotiating with administration officials over a new labor agreement.
Approximately 95% of eligible voters approved of the strike action after more than 50 bargaining sessions have occurred without a deal. Despite a federal mediator being brought in, talks have still been slow to progress. We will keep you posted as negotiations continue.