(Click here to download the March 2015 National Right to Work Newsletter)
On April 14, barring a successful legal challenge, President Barack Obama’s radical National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) will begin implementing its sweeping overhaul of decades-old procedures under which Big Labor may obtain “exclusive” bargaining control over workers.
How extreme is this ill-disguised effort to bolster monopolistic unionism?
To start with, in order to shorten dramatically the amount of time that workers have to share information with one another about the possible ill effects of unionization, the pending rules expressly allow unionization elections to occur even when up to 20% of the workers casting ballots may potentially be ineligible to vote!
“The forced-unionism cheerleaders who approved this scheme last December actually claimed that it’s fair for federal bureaucrats to wait until after a unionization ballot occurs to decide whose votes should count, and whose shouldn’t,” said National Right to Work Committee Vice President Matthew Leen.
Employees’ Phone Numbers, E-Mail Addresses Must Be Given to Union Organizers
“But any nonpartisan observer can see,” Mr. Leen continued, “that what Obama NLRB appointees are really doing is empowering the agency’s union boss-‘friendly’ bureaucrats to manipulate the certification process to make it almost impossible for a Big Labor unionization campaign to fail.”
Other provisions in the certification-campaign overhaul mandate that employers hand over employee phone numbers, e-mail addresses, and work schedules to union organizers within two days after an election is directed.
Employers will be required to hand over to union organizers the personal information of all employees who may be unionized, including even employees who expressly ask their employer not to do it.
Mr. Leen concluded, “Taken as a whole, the NLRB’s new ambush union organizing rules will make unionization campaigns even more one-sided and stifle the rights of employees to remain union free. This is the Obama board’s most brazen move yet to increase union bosses’ power to corral workers into union ranks.”
As the April launch date for “ambush elections” approaches, Republican leaders in the U.S. House and Senate have advanced a “joint resolution of disapproval” that could theoretically stop the Obama NLRB in its tracks.
Until October, Congress Will Be Able to Do Little More Than Complain About NLRB
Unfortunately, as soon as this resolution gets past Big Labor-generated congressional opposition, it will surely be vetoed by the President, with no realistic prospects for an override.
“At this point in time, by far the best hope Right to Work supporters have for protecting independent-minded employees from the imminent NLRB assault on their privacy and freedom of choice is litigation charging that the rules violate federal labor law,” explained Mr. Leen.
“A number of suits challenging the NLRB ‘ambush elections’ scheme have been filed in federal court. And the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, the Committee’s sister organization, has submitted amicus briefs siding with the plaintiffs in two of these cases.
“Congress does have authority under the Constitution to stop rogue agencies like the NLRB from rewriting federal law by bureaucratic fiat, but to do this lawmakers normally must wield their ‘power of the purse string.’
“And unfortunately, the controversial $1.1 trillion ‘cromnibus’ spending bill adopted by the ‘lame-duck’ Congress last December furnishes funding for the NLRB until the end of September without putting any restrictions on the implementation of the ‘ambush election’ power grab.
“Consequently, the soonest that Right to Work allies in Congress can act effectively to protect employees who don’t wish to be dragged into a union from the Obama NLRB will be this October.
“Even after the NLRB’s appropriation for the current fiscal year expires, stopping the agency’s forced-unionism extremists from undermining employees’ ability to resist Big Labor monopoly control will be an uphill battle. But it’s one freedom-loving Americans must fight.”