Trump NLRB Urged to Help Trapped Workers Escape Big Labor Bias
Biased Regulations Keep Union Monopolists Entrenched For Decades
On April 11, the U.S. Senate voted to confirm President Trump’s nomination of attorney John Ring for an open seat on the powerful, five-member National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
With Mr. Ring seated as NLRB chairman, the NLRB now, it seems, has three members who aren’t profoundly biased in favor of forced unionism and may potentially outvote the two remaining members who were appointed by ex-President Barack Obama.
(Both of these Obama holdovers have established track records of support for “reinterpreting” federal labor law to expand union bosses’ special privileges.)
Right to Work advocates are hopeful that the NLRB’s new majority will seize the opportunity to roll back as many as possible of the power grabs perpetrated by the Obama Board since 2010.
And National Right to Work leaders are also calling upon the Trump NLRB to remove older bureaucratic barriers insulating Big Labor monopolists from dissatisfied workers that are not mandated by any federal labor statute.
Workers Can’t Stop Their Personal Information From Being Disclosed to Big Labor
One of the most outrageous Obama NLRB initiatives to help union bosses corral workers into often unwanted unions is the “ambush election” rule rubber-stamped by the Board in late 2014.
Key provisions in this sweeping overhaul of the procedures through which Big Labor may obtain “exclusive” bargaining control over workers have forced employers to hand over employee phone numbers, e-mail addresses, and work schedules to union bosses within three days after an election is directed.
Employers must disclose to union organizers the personal information of all employees who may be unionized, including even employees who expressly ask their employer not to do so.
The “ambush elections” scheme has also dramatically shortened the time frame individual workers have to gather, evaluate, and share with their coworkers information about the possible downsides of unionization.
To help accomplish this objective, the Obama NLRB imposed regulations giving the green light for unionization elections to occur even when up to 20% of the workers casting ballots are potentially not part of the bargaining unit.
National Right to Work Committee President Mark Mix commented: “For three years, the Obama NLRB’s ‘ambush election’ rules have been trampling workers’ privacy and deepening labor policy’s bias in favor of monopolistic unions.
“Now that tunnel-visioned proponents of the collectivization of employees no longer hold a majority on the NLRB, the ‘ambush election’ rules should be rescinded without delay.”
Monopoly Bargaining Is A Special Privilege
“But far more than mere reversion to the pre-Obama NLRB status quo can and should be done to protect the individual employee’s freedom of choice,” Mr. Mix declared.
“It is not within the NLRB’s power to prohibit union bosses from acquiring and exercising monopoly-bargaining privileges to speak for workers who don’t want to join their organization as well as union members on matters concerning pay, benefits, and work rules.
“This special privilege is explicitly authorized in federal labor law. Only Congress can take it away, and Congress should ultimately do that.
“But nothing in the National Labor Relations Act requires that union bosses be allowed to continue wielding monopoly-bargaining control over the employees in a workplace when there is no longer any evidence that most employees want to be unionized.”
Mr. Mix cited a 2016 study, published by the Washington, D.C.-based Heritage Foundation, estimating that 94% of American workers currently subject to union monopoly bargaining never got to vote for or against it in a secret-ballot election monitored by the NLRB.
In April, the Committee’s sister organization, the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, submitted comments to the NLRB calling upon the agency to require union bosses to furnish evidence periodically that they have the support of the majority of the front-line employees in the workplace.
“If union bosses are unable to furnish such evidence, or refuse to try, the NLRB should terminate their monopoly-bargaining privileges,” said Mr. Mix.
“As biased as the federal labor code is against the individual worker who wants to be union-free, nothing in it mandates that monopolistic unions be allowed to remain entrenched, decade after decade, without having to lift a finger.”