To be concerted, employee activity must involve more than one employee. In addition to acting together, an employee or a small group of employees may act on the authority of or on behalf of other workers. In other words, an employee’s actions may be concerted even though he or she acts alone. The activity will be for “mutual aid or protection” where the activity seeks to improve the terms and conditions of employment. Nearly any activity arising from any matter in which employees have a legitimate interest is an activity for employee mutual aid or protection. This is true even if the activity goes outside the immediate employer-employee relationship.
Employers will learn when concerted activity is “afoot” and what they can and cannot do about it.
In this vein, employer work rules and policies will violate the NLRA when they reasonably tend to chill employees in their exercise of their rights under the Act. Non-union employers must also be cognizant of principles involving the implementation of no-solicitation policies. Solicitation can be restricted but such policies cannot be disparately enforced, or a Union would be able to win the right to solicit for its cause, i.e. organizing. These rules also apply to solicitation and the use of Company computer and internet capabilities. It is indeed a brave new world we live in!
Why Should You Attend:
The recent years, with a Democratic Administration, have seen the NLRB swing sharply pro-union. We have seen a number of far reaching decisions issue from the NLRB, decisions which affect (some might say invade) what, until recently, may well have been seen as solid management prerogatives. As a result, non-union employers may not know what danger areas exist when they implement policies or deal with employee “situations” (e.g. salting) that arise and which may be time bombs.
Unions are also much more technology savvy when it comes to organizing non-union entities. Unions are adept at using social media outlets; we have gone far beyond the days of the organizer waiting in the parking lot for employees to leave at the end of the day. As stated above, the timing is far more compressed and what employers can write, say or do, is nebulous. A wrong action or inaction can directly lead to your company becoming union.
The regulation of employee use of social media is, perhaps, the biggest danger confronting employers. The law is only starting to evolve on this new issue, with most NLRB decisions favouring employees and reinstating (with full back pay) employees fired for what would, on their face, seem totally inappropriate social media usage, worthy of discharge.
Areas Covered in this Webinar:
The National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) protects employees who wish to unionize and collectively bargain. It also protects, and applies to, employees of non-union employers, but this is a truism not completely understood (or, sometimes, acknowledged) by non-union entities. Employers have to know when employees are engaging in protected, concerted activity, because a misstep or wrong decision made on the belief that there is no “protection” for these workers, can lead to huge liability.
Understanding the Legal Framework
Understanding Potential Issues/ Landmines Inherent in Different Employment Practices
Who Will Benefit:
Upper Management Team
Operations Supervisors/ Managers
Mark E. Tabakman is a partner in the national law firm of Fox Rothschild LLP. He is a labor and employment lawyer who handles union and non-union matters for employers nationwide. Mark counsels HR professionals and in-house counsel in complying with federal/state employment laws to provide creative, practical and cost-effective solutions to employment issues.
Mark has a strong background in traditional labor law. He has acted as Chief Spokesperson at numerous labor negotiations. He has arbitrated cases involving wrongful discharge and contract interpretation claims. He has defended employers in numerous NLRB proceedings, including all kinds of representational actions, including so-called ambush elections. He has extensive experience in developing and implementing NLRB-compliant personnel policies. He has litigated several NLRB unfair labor practice charge (ULP) cases.
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