More probusiness NLRB on the way as Emanuel wins confirmation

September 25, 2017 0 COMMENTS

by Tammy Binford

As William Emanuel takes a seat on the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), employers will see the panel going in a more probusiness and less union-friendly direction, Board watchers say, but it will take a while before cases come up to roll back recent decisions.

Emanuel, an attorney representing management in labor and employment matters, won confirmation by the Senate on September 25, giving the panel its first Republican majority in 10 years. Emanuel most recently practiced in the Los Angeles office of large management-side law firm Littler Mendelson.

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Columbia University decision latest NLRB victory for unions

August 24, 2016 0 COMMENTS

Colombia university campus groundsThe National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) ruling that graduate student assistants at private colleges and universities are entitled to unionize is the latest Board action seen as a boon to union interests.

In a 3-1 decision issued on August 23, the Board ruled that graduate assistants at Columbia University are employees as well as students and may therefore be represented by a union. The ruling overturns the 2004 Brown University decision that determined that students working as teaching and research assistants should be considered students, not employees.

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Time for federal contractors to get ready for new pay transparency rule

September 10, 2015 0 COMMENTS

Federal contractors need to be preparing now for the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) new pay transparency rule, a rule going into effect in January that is likely to present challenges to a number of employers, according to an attorney familiar with its provisions.

“This rule appears to me to be part of the overarching intention of the agency to provide for more defined and broader rights for workers,” Jo Ellen Whitney, an attorney with the Davis Brown Law Firm in Des Moines, Iowa, said after publication of the rule was announced September 10. “Any time we add a section to the law that would broaden coverage or create a new category of discrimination or retaliation, we create employer issues. This is not because employers will violate the law, but because it is uncertain how it will be used to support any potential employee claim.”

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NLRB dismisses petition to unionize Northwestern football players

August 17, 2015 0 COMMENTS

Just how the dismissal of the petition to unionize some Northwestern University football players will affect other representation issues before the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is uncertain, but one issue the Board didn’t touch is whether scholarship football players should be considered employees.

The NLRB announced on August 17 that it had unanimously decided to dismiss the 2014 unionization petition because “asserting jurisdiction would not promote labor stability” because of the nature and structure of the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s (NCAA) Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS).

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NLRB’s McDonald’s franchise determination called ‘aggressive play’

July 30, 2014 0 COMMENTS

A National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruling that the McDonald’s corporation is a joint employer with its franchisees is a departure from longtime precedent that’s drawing fire from the fast-food giant and other business interests.

The NLRB’s Office of the General Counsel released a statement on July 29 saying the Oak Brook, Illinois-based corporation could be named as a joint employer in a rash of complaints stemming from employee efforts to unionize and fight for higher wages. The decision is “another aggressive play” by the NLRB, according to Bart N. Sisk, an attorney with Butler Snow LLP in Memphis, Tennessee.

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NLRB invites briefs in Northwestern football case

May 12, 2014 0 COMMENTS

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is inviting interested parties to submit briefs on the Northwestern University football case. Briefs must be submitted on or before June 26, 2014.

At the request of the university, the NLRB agreed on April 24 to review the decision of a regional director finding that the university’s scholarship football players are employees under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and therefore are eligible to unionize.

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Comment period nears end for NLRB ‘quickie election’ rule

March 28, 2014 0 COMMENTS

by Lauren E.M. Russell

April 7 marks the end of the comment period for proposed rules from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) that would shorten the time needed to hold union representation elections.

This latest effort is the second time the NLRB has broached the subject of what foes call “quickie elections.” The first set of rules was proposed in June 2011 but was struck down by a federal court on technical grounds because of the way the rules were adopted.

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NLRB regional director orders union election for Northwestern football players

March 27, 2014 0 COMMENTS

A regional director of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has ruled that football players at Northwestern University are entitled to a union election because they’re essentially employees of the private university located in Evanston, Illinois.

Peter Sung Ohr, Region 13 director of the NLRB, issued an order on March 26 that a union representation election be conducted. He said Northwestern’s scholarship football players are entitled to vote on union representation because they’re “employees” under Section 2(3) of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).

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NLRB sets public meeting on proposed changes to union election rules

February 26, 2014 0 COMMENTS

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has set two days of meetings in April to hear opinions on proposed changes to rules governing union representation elections.

The NLRB will meet for April 10-11 at its headquarters in Washington, D.C., to allow members of the public to present their views on what probusiness interests have labeled “quickie” election rules. Additional days of meetings may be scheduled for April 8 and/or 9, according to an announcement from the Board.

Those interested in speaking during the meeting must submit a request to the NLRB no later than March 10. If there are more requests to speak than there are available time slots, the available time will be allocated based on the content of the requests so that a variety of viewpoints will be represented, the Board says.

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More low-wage worker strikes are set for August 29

August 27, 2013 2 COMMENTS

Fast-food and other low-wage workers who have staged strikes in a handful of cities around the country in recent months are planning to take their efforts nationwide on August 29.

Strikers and their supporters are calling for $15 an hour as well as more protections for workers interested in unionizing. The latest wave of strikes occurred during the week of July 29 in New York, Chicago, Detroit, Milwaukee, St. Louis, Kansas City, and Flint, Michigan.

The strikes coincide with an effort, championed by President Barack Obama, to raise the minimum wage. In February, Obama asked Congress to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $9 an hour in stages by the end of 2015 and to index it to inflation thereafter.

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