Texarkana, AR (May 16, 2014) – A Southern Bakeries, LLC worker has moved to intervene to block a federal agency from foisting unwanted union representation back on his workplace after he and his coworkers overwhelmingly expressed their desire to remove the union.
With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, Southern Bakeries worker John Hankins filed the motion in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Arkansas, Texarkana Division.
After the workers at the Southern Bakeries facility in Hope voted in a secret-ballot election to determine whether they wanted to remove the Bakery, Confectionary, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Local 111 union officials from their workplace, the union hierarchy filed federal charges with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to impound the workers’ ballots.
Hankins and two-thirds of his coworkers then signed a petition to remove the union from their workplace. After the workers presented the petition to their employer, Southern Bakeries withdrew recognition of the union as the workers’ monopoly bargaining representative as the law prescribes.
In February, the NLRB Regional Director in the case asked the federal court to issue a 10(j) injunction requiring the company to once again recognize the union as the workers’ monopoly bargaining representative while the union’s charges are pending. The Regional Director argues in the extraordinary legal maneuver that leaving the workers free from the unwanted union representation would do “irreparable harm.”
“The NLRB Regional Director apparently believes workers being free from a union they clearly want nothing to do with would cause ‘irreparable harm’,” said Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation. “If federal labor law purports to protect workers, then what ‘irreparable harm’ occurs if the workers remain free from an unwanted union?”
“This case underscores the pro-forced unionism bias of President Obama’s NLRB,” added Mix. “We urge the court to reject the Regional Director’s motion to foist the union back on these workers despite their desire and actions to free themselves from monopoly unionization.”
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, assists thousands of employees in more than 250 cases nationwide per year.