The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has just approved a push for swifter union control through speedier elections that could occur within two to three weeks after filing a petition. Before the rule goes into effect, it will be drafted into final language for a subsequent NLRB vote within the next three weeks.
Comments from Indiana Chamber of Commerce President Kevin Brinegar on this development:
"This is yet another attempt by organized labor to abandon the historical democratic process within labor-management relations and tip the scales in favor of employees voting for a union. Currently, the average time it takes to have an election is 38 days. By cutting that time in half, unions are boldly trying to rob employers of their time to fully discuss the impact of unionizing their workplace.
"It all comes down to fairness. Employees need to be able to fully hear both sides of the union organizing argument, and then let them make an informed decision. What the NLRB is attempting is basically an ambush and once again illustrates the Board’s increasing abuse of power."
There are other concerning changes covered in the new rule, says Brinegar, including no pre-election appeals to the Board and any post-election review of issues would be strictly discretionary.
The NLRB has less than three weeks to finalize its recommendations since the Board loses its quorum of three members later in December, including one key supporter of the approved election changes. The Board’s vote on Wednesday was 2-1. There are up to five members in total on the Board at any one time.
The National Labor Relations Act provides employees with the right to form or join a union in order to collectively bargain with their employer. To be recognized by an employer, a union must demonstrate it has the support of a majority of the employees. Any union election process is supervised by the NLRB.