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Anti-union businesses seeking help with new election rule


MAY 2015, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton Edition of The Union News

Anti-union businesses seeking help with new election rule


REGION, May 3rd- Businesses throughout the nation have made it clear they are worried about the new National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) rule that will expedite representation elections through the agency.

In the previous edition of the newspaper it was reported that the labor community applauded President Barack Obama’s veto of a Republican led resolution that would have overturned the NLRB rule that will expedite representation elections. The new rules and President Obama’s veto was clearly under reported by the main-stream media. However, this newspaper had several news articles regarding the new election rule.

Mr. Obama vetoed the Republican attempt to overturn the NLRB rule that took effect on April 14th. The veto was seen as a victory for the labor community, and the Democrats in the United States Congress. The resolution to overturn the new rules was passed by both the House of Representatives and the United States Senate in March. The legislation was supported and passed by mainly members of the Republican party.

The new rules, which was created by the five-member NLRB in Washington DC in December, is entended to streamline NLRB conducted Representation Elections. The labor community has complained for years that the current process favors companies, mainly larger employers, that have used the procedures of the old system to often delay, sometimes for months or years, of having the election conducted by the NLRB, which oversees the election. The tactic often is used to stall NLRB elections, especially when it appears the union would likely win.

Republicans were unable to override President O’Bama’s veto because there were not enough Senate Republicans in the chamber. There are 54 Republican seats in the Senate and under the chamber rules 67 is needed to override a presidential veto.

Under NLRB rules, at least 30 percent of a unit of workers must request the agency conduct an election. In the election at least 50 percent plus one of the eligible to participate employees must vote to be represented by a labor organization to become their bargaining representative for the purpose of collective bargaining.

Employers will be required to post an “NLRB Notice of Election,” which contains information about the representation petition that was filed, and advises the two parties their rights and obligations. A “Statement of Position” form will need to be submitted by the employer to the NLRB within seven days after the receipt of the petition.

The document must include a list of eligible voters, their job classifications, their shift schedules, and work locations. However, the employer can not present any opinion or evidence on the issue of the representation election or request a delay in the vote.

Under the rules, employers can not challenge voter eligibility before the election, often used to delay elections, and must wait for the post-election hearing. Also, pre-election hearings will be limited to ‘Statement of Position’ the employer submitted not questioning the election merit.

The eligible to participate employees list must be filed electronically two days after the election notice was filed and must include employees names, home addresses, telephone numbers, and e-mail addresses.

Anti-union companies throughout the nation have been contacting law firms and consultant groups for strategic advice how to not have their employees vote to be unionized. They fear more workers may vote to become affiliated with a labor organization for the purpose of collective bargaining and have stated their “first amendment “ rights will be violated under the new rule.

It is expected that the new rule will increase the current average election time from 38 days after filing to 20 days.