While most were focused on hurricane Irene and troubling worldwide economic developments last week, the National Labor Relations Board quietly issued an important pronouncement for employers and those who wish to unionize them.
On Thursday afternoon the Board announced that it had finalized a regulation that would require private sector employers (union and non-union, for-profit and nonprofit alike) to notify all employees of their right to organize a union in the workplace. Under the new rule, employers must post an 11-by-17-inch notice advising employees that “they have the right to act together to improve wages and working conditions, to form, join and assist a union, to bargain collectively with their employer, and to refrain from any of these activities. It also provides examples of unlawful employer and union conduct, and instructs employees on how to contact the NLRB with questions or complaints. This posting must be displayed in communal areas where the employer would typically post notices.
For more than 75 years, under both Democratic and Republican administrations, the Board has never seen the need to impose such a requirement.
Employers will have until November 14, 2011, to obtain and post the prescribed notices. If an employer normally provides information to employees by way of an intranet or Internet site, then the employer is also required to circulate the employee rights in the same way. Failure to post the notice will constitute an "unfair labor practice" and may result in legal action against the employer.
We have prepared a 25-minute webinar to address the impact of this new rule.
- How and where to post the notice (including intranet and Internet issues), and what you can do to establish evidence of compliance;
- Whether you should post a companion notice informing employees of their right to refrain from organizing activity and what type of language could be included in such a notice; and
- How the Board’s increased efforts to help unions reach non-union employers should impact your policies, practices and procedures.
You may listen to webinar at this link: http://taftlaw.adobeconnect.com/p3pbcwca9yv/
We hope you find it informative.