Header graphic for print
Labor & Collective Bargaining

Category Archives: NLRB

Subscribe to NLRB RSS Feed

Expect NLRB Whirlwind before Schiffer Leaves

Hold on for the National Labor Relations Board’s version of the popular Disneyland attraction, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. With NLRB Member Nancy Schiffer’s term ending on December 16, 2014, expect a flurry of important NLRB activity similar to that which attended the expiration of former-NLRB Member Brian Hayes’ term on December 16, 2012. Among the… Continue Reading

NLRB Cannot Show Unlawful Discharges Where Decision-Maker Was Unaware Of Employees’ Pro-Union Activity

Rejecting a National Labor Relations Board decision that two employees were unlawfully discharged for engaging in union activities because there was no evidence that the person who made the decision to discharge the workers knew that they had engaged in any union activity, a federal appeals court in Richmond has refused to enforce a Board… Continue Reading

Employer’s Warning Violates NLRA, Board Rules

An employer’s verbal warning for “continued frivolous requests for information…and interfering with the operation of the business,” directed to a shop steward who made two  requests to the employer for information including payroll information, violated the National Labor Relations Act, according to the National Labor Relations Board. Dover Energy, Inc.,Blackmer Division, 361 NLRB No. 48… Continue Reading

416 Reasons Why There is No Rest for the NLRB

When the U.S. Supreme Court decided in June that President Barack Obama’s three recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board in January 2012 were invalid, NLRB Chairman Mark Gaston Pearce stated, “[The Board is] committed to resolving any cases affected by today’s decision as expeditiously as possible.” Now, the Board has issued a 21-page… Continue Reading

Republican Senators Propose to Make Significant Changes to NLRA

If two Republican United States Senators have their way, membership on the National Labor Relations Board will be increased from five to six, and other  significant changes will be made to the National Labor Relations Act. The “National Labor Relations Board Reform Act,” introduced on September 16 by Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Mitch McConnell… Continue Reading

Firings for Facebook Comments Unlawful, NLRB Rules

An employer violated the National Labor Relations Act by discharging two employees because of their participation in a Facebook discussion about their employer’s State income tax withholding mistakes, by threatening employees with discharge for their Facebook activity, by questioning employees about that activity, and by informing employees they were being discharged because of their Facebook… Continue Reading

Labor Board Rejects Micro-Unit at Retailer

In a long-awaited decision, the National Labor Relations Board has held that a petitioned-for “micro” bargaining unit consisting of women’s shoe sales associates working in two areas within a store, which followed no administrative or operational lines set by the store, was inappropriate under Specialty Healthcare, 357 NLRB No. 83 (2011), where the Board seemingly… Continue Reading

NLRB Precedent Not Binding after Noel Canning, Labor Board Judge Declares, Rejecting Claimed Dues Deduction Violation

In an unusual move, an NLRB administrative law judge has disregarded Board law and held that an employer that stopped dues deductions after the expiration of its collective bargaining agreement did not commit an unfair labor practice, dismissing an unfair labor practice complaint.  Lincoln Lutheran of Racine, 30-CA-11099 (JD-49-14 August 11, 2014) Relying on the United… Continue Reading

It’s Basic: Party Desiring Termination or Modification of CBA Must Notify FMCS and All Applicable State Agencies

The National Labor Relations Act requires an employer that wants to terminate or modify an existing union contract to provide at least 30 days’ notice to the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS) and all the relevant state mediation agencies before terminating or modifying the contract.  The possible consequences of failing to fully comply with… Continue Reading

NLRB’s Sobering Decision Permits Union Representation Before Employee Drug Test

The National Labor Relations Board has held that a supermarket chain violated the National Labor Relations Act by terminating an employee who refused to submit to a drug test without first consulting a union representative, affirming an April 2013 decision by its Administrative Law Judge.  Ralphs Grocery Co., 361 NLRB No. 9 (July 31, 2014). … Continue Reading

NLRB and Department of Labor: One Hand Washes the Other to Promote Cross-Filed Complaints

Our colleagues at Jackson Lewis’ OSHA Law Blog recently reported that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration of the Department of Labor (DOL) and the NLRB had entered into an agreement whereby OSHA would notify complainants who file untimely OSHA retaliation charges of their right to file an unfair labor practice charge with the NLRB. … Continue Reading

NLRB Continues To Apply And Expand Specialty Healthcare

The NLRB has issued a long-awaited decision in Macy’s, Inc., 361 NLRB No. 4 (July 22, 2014).  In the case, the Board considered the application of its “micro-unit Specialty Healthcare decision in a retail setting.  The Board found appropriate a unit of only those employees working in Macy’s cosmetics and fragrance departments, excluding all other salespeople.  For… Continue Reading

NLRB Ratifies Agency Actions Taken When Board Members Were Not Validly Appointed

While maintaining that “all the administrative, personnel and procurement matters taken by the Board [from January 4, 2012 to August 5, 2013] were timely and appropriate,” the National Labor Relations Board nevertheless has announced, “in an abundance of caution,” that it has unanimously ratified all administrative, personnel, and procurement matters taken by the Board during… Continue Reading

Congressman Wants to Make Unionization a Civil Right

The Employee Empowerment Act, introduced in Congress on July 30, would make the right to unionize a federally protected civil right, allowing aggrieved employees to file private lawsuits against their employers, similar to protections currently available under federal law against discrimination on the basis of protected characteristics such national origin, sex, race, religion and color…. Continue Reading

Former Recess Appointee Block to be Renominated to NLRB

According to multiple reports, President Barack Obama has announced  his intention to renominate Sharon Block to the National Labor Relations Board. Block was one of the Board Members whose recess appointment on January 4, 2012 was invalidated in the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in NLRB v. Noel Canning as unconstitutional.  Block, a former labor and… Continue Reading

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds D.C. Circuit Decision in Noel Canning Invalidating NLRB Recess Appointments

In a lengthy opinion authored by Justice Stephen Breyer, and drawing heavily on historical practice of Presidents and the Senate, the United States Supreme Court has upheld the decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in Noel Canning v. NLRB, concluding that President Obama’s three recess appointments to the National Labor… Continue Reading

OSHA and NLRB Update Referral Agreement

OSHA and the NLRB have announced implementation of a joint referral agreement to redirect to the Labor Board OSHA complainants whose claims of discrimination under the OSH Act are time barred, but may form the basis of timely unfair labor practice charges under the NLRA.  The accord was disclosed by NLRB Associate General Counsel Purcell… Continue Reading

Appearing in an NLRB Notice Near You, QR Code to Board Decision

Fashioning itself another tool in its quest to educate the public about the National Labor Relations Act and the National Labor Relations Board, the NLRB has adopted a union’s request that a violation of the Act requires employers to inform employees that the Board’s decision and order is available on the agency’s website.  Durham Schools… Continue Reading

NLRB Considers Allowing Employees to Use Employers’ Electronic Communications Systems for Protected Activity

Employers often forbid employees from using company e-mail and other electronic communications systems for all non-business purposes.  Under current National Labor Relations Board decisions, such a blanket prohibition, which includes a prohibition on using these systems for Section 7 (i.e., union and other protected concerted activity) purposes is lawful as “employees have no statutory right… Continue Reading

Employer Must Bargain with Union over Requirement to Sign Interview Notes

The NLRB has found an employer’s unilateral implementation of a requirement that employees represented by a union sign the notes taken by a management representative during an investigative  interview attesting to their  veracity violates the National Labor Relations Act.  Murtis Taylor Human Services Systems, 360 NLRB No. 66 (2014).  The new signature requirement was a… Continue Reading

If NCAA Scholarship Football Players Are Employees, What Are Coaches?…Supervisors?

The decision of the Regional Director of Region 13 of the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) that scholarship football players at Northwestern University are “employees” under the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) has created an interesting question for all colleges and universities: Are members of coaching staffs now considered to be supervisors under the NLRA?… Continue Reading

NLRB Begins Public Hearings on Proposed New Election Rules

The National Labor Relations Board yesterday began public hearings on proposed changes to its rules  governing representation elections.  The proposed rules were published in the Federal Register on February 6, 2014. See Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Representation-Case Procedures. The deadline for initial public comments on the rules ended on April 7; reply comments are due… Continue Reading