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Showing 101 posts in National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

The Scabby Saga Continues

The battle over Scabby the Rat took another turn on July 21, 2021, when the National Labor Relations Board issued its anticipated decision and order in International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 150 and Lippert Components, Inc.

Scabby is a large, 12-foot-high inflatable rat with red eyes, menacing fangs, and claws. Unions often use it to inform the public that they have a dispute with a non-union employer. The rat often is used in construction trades when a non-union contractor provides services at a worksite. Additionally, as part of street theatre, many unions use the rat—along with large banners and union representatives standing nearby—to publicize their disputes with non-union employers, known as the primary employer for labor law purposes. More ›

U.S. House Seeks Drastic Revision of Labor Law with Protect the Right to Organize Act of 2021

In a Hinshaw Insights for Employers Alert, we consider the drastic revisions to the National Labor Relations Act and federal labor policy contemplated by the Protect the Right to Organize Act of 2021. The bill was passed with little fanfare by the U.S. House of Representatives last month.

Read the full alert

NLRB Weighs in on the Issue of Employer Neutrality Agreements and Section 7 Rights

The National Labor Relations Board (Board) issued a Guidance Memorandum (Guidance) on September 4, 2020, addressing the analysis of employer assistance in union organizing efforts. The Guidance has been provided as a response to requests from regional directors on a series of issues relating to the "amount of lawful support an employer can provide to a union that is attempting to organize its employees." More ›

Escape Clause in Mandatory Arbitration Agreement Carries the Day for Employer in NLRB's Unfair Labor Practice Analysis

Historically, there has been a "push and pull" between the National Labor Relations Board (Board) and employers over mandatory arbitration agreements and class action waivers. Although most of the disputes have been resolved by recent SCOTUS jurisprudence, the Board remains concerned with restrictions in arbitration agreements that limit the ability of employees to file unfair labor practice charges before the Board if employees believe their Section 7 rights have been violated. More ›

NLRB Announces Final Joint Employer Rule

Following in the footsteps of the U.S. Department of Labor, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced its Final Rule regarding joint employment. While the NLRB rarely engages in rulemaking, it deemed it necessary in this instance to provide clarity and predictability regarding joint employment. Effective April 27, 2020, the Final Rule rescinds the current test which went into effect in 2015 and reverts back to the prior analysis. This impacts all employers, particularly in the context of collective bargaining, staffing companies, and franchisers. More ›

D.C. Circuit Instructs NLRB to Revisit its Approach to Balancing Section 7 Rights with Other Employer Obligations

The Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit recently remanded a decision of the National Labor Relations Board (the "Board"), thus compelling the Board to revisit and clarify its position on the scope of Section 7 protection for speech or conduct which may subject an employer to liability under other statutes, including Title VII. The D.C. Circuit concluded that the Board failed to consider key arguments raised by the employer, namely, the conflict between the Board's interpretation of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and an employer's obligation to provide a workplace free of unlawful harassment under state and federal equal employment opportunity laws. More ›

NLRB Restricts Employee Use of Employer-Provided Email for Section 7 Purposes

Earlier this week, the National Labor Relations Board ("Board") issued an important decision, returning to its prior precedent with respect to employee use of employer-provided email for Section 7 purposes. In Caesars Entertainment and International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, District Council, the Board overruled the Obama-era decision of Purple Communications, Inc. and returned to the rationale the Board had adopted during the George W. Bush era in Register Guard.

The Board held that the Purple Communications decision was out of line with its prior precedent and impermissibly discounted employers' property rights with respect to their IT resources while overstating the importance of those resources to Section 7 activity. In returning to the Register Guard holding, the Board recognized and created an exception to the Register Guard rule in cases where an employer's email system is the only reasonable means for employees to communicate with one another. More ›

NLRB Clarifies "Wright Line" Test

When motive is at issue in resolving certain unfair labor practices under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), the National Labor Relations Board (the Board) utilizes the burden-shifting framework established under Wright Line to make a determination. In Tschiggfrie Properties, Ltd., the Board took the opportunity to clarify the initial burden of proof required by the General Counsel in light of what it perceived to be confusion over a number of its recent decisions, as well as criticism from a number of federal courts, including, most recently, the Eighth Circuit. More ›

EEOC Petitions the NLRB to Change Legal Test for Considering Whether Employee Racial Outbursts are Protected NLRA Activity

In response to an amicus brief submitted by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has agreed to review General Motors LLC, a case which reveals a tension between the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 regarding employee racial outbursts during union activity. The EEOC requested the NLRB to change its test for determining whether or not an employee outburst is protected by the NLRA when it includes racially-charged language. The NLRB's decision could provide employers with more flexibility in disciplining employees for racial misconduct during union activity. More ›

NLRB to Propose Rule Extending Employer Property Rights

Several recent decisions by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) have analyzed the balance between employer property rights and union organization rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). These decisions appear to shift the balance in favor of employers. It is anticipated that the NLRB will propose a rule in the near future clarifying employer property rights in light of the recent decisions that have significantly modified past precedent. More ›