In Attempt to Avoid Being Voted Out, PA Steelworkers Union Bosses Secretly ‘Ratify’ Contract Workers Twice Overwhelmingly Rejected
Workers at Latrobe Specialty Steel’s facility (also known as Carpenter Technology) in Franklin, PA, are fighting Steelworkers union officials’ attempt to trap them under a union contract workers voted down twice. Their effort follows union bosses’ secret “ratification” of the unpopular contract despite telling workers that their votes would determine whether the contract would go into effect. Latrobe Specialty Steel employees are seeking to “decertify,” i.e. vote out, the Steelworkers Union with free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys.
Kerry Hunsberger leads an employee push to vote out the Steelworkers union at Latrobe Specialty Steel. Hunsberger’s attorneys filed a brief this week at the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) arguing that union officials concocted an improbable contract ratification story to avoid being voted out by the workers they claim to “represent.” The union bosses admit to signing the unpopular contract behind workers’ backs in an attempt to trigger the NLRB’s so-called “contract bar” policy. The “contract bar” arbitrarily immunizes unions from employee decertification votes for up to three years after a contract between union and company officials is finalized. […]
“The ‘contract bar’ arbitrarily blocks, often for years, workers’ statutory right under federal law to vote out union officials they oppose. Worse, it encourages union officials to cynically impose a contract at all costs, especially when union bosses know rank-and-file workers would see such a contract as a reason to want to be free of so-called union ‘representation,’” commented National Right to Work Foundation President Mark Mix. “Immunizing union officials from being voted out by the workers they claim to ‘represent’ creates an incentive structure in which union boss power comes first and majority support among workers comes last.”
“This case presents an easy choice for the NLRB: defend the rights of rank-and-file workers or side with Steelworkers union officials who repeatedly misled those workers and twice disregarded their votes simply to protect union power and compulsory dues,” added Mix.
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