News Release

Worker Advocate Challenges Obama Labor Board's Ambush Elections Rules

Proposed rules would allow union bosses to ambush workers to push them into Big Labor's forced-dues-paying ranks

Washington, DC (April 7, 2014) – National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys filed formal comments today with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) opposing the Board's proposed guidelines, which will help give union organizers the upper hand over independent-minded workers.

The NLRB again proposed these rules dictating how union organizing elections are conducted after a federal court struck them down in 2012. The court ruled that the Board did not have a quorum necessary to enact the new rules when it tried to do so.

The proposed rules dramatically shorten the time frame individual workers have to gather, evaluate, and share information with their coworkers about the effects of unionization. Moreover, the rules require job providers to disclose workers' personal information (including their phone numbers, email addresses, and shift information), thus opening up dissenting or undecided workers to intimidation and harassment.

The new rules would also create a loophole which allows union organizers to claim they have support of 30 percent of employees in the workplace, the minimum number required to initiate an election, despite a dispute regarding the size of the bargaining unit in question. Then, union organizers who fear that they do not have enough support to win an election could withdraw their request for an election and use the newly-gotten personal information in later attempts to unionize the workers.

Foundation staff attorneys argue in the formal comments that this "ambush" election process would encourage the forced unionization of workers who might otherwise be opposed to unionization, and that the rule requiring job providers to hand over the employees' personal information to union bosses violates workers' privacy.

"The NLRB's proposed rules make union organizing campaigns even more one-sided and stifle the rights of employees who may oppose unionization in their workplace," said Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation. "This power grab reminds us once again that the Big Labor-dominated NLRB's enforcement of federal labor law is most often used to empower union officials, not workers, with unique and damaging privileges designed to bolster their power and revenue."

Foundation staff attorney William Messenger will also speak against the proposed rules at the NLRB's public meetings on the changes on Friday, April 11.

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.

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