Feds force private businesses to tell employees its ok to unionize

nlrb.jpgGood times, huh?

The National Labor Relations Board has issued a Final Rule requiring most private-sector employers to post a notice informing employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act, which includes — you guessed it — the right to form a union. 

This rule goes into effect on November 14, 2011 and I’ve got the dirty details after the jump.

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Here’s what employers need to know about this new rule
(Based on the Board’s “Fact Sheet” found here)

    • The posting requirement applies to all private-sector employers (including labor unions) subject to the National Labor Relations Act, which excludes agricultural, railroad and airline employers.

    • Even if you have no union in your workplace, you must post the notice. This includes federal contractors, who already are required by the Department of Labor to post a similar notice of employee rights, and small businesses who may only have a few employees.
    • The Board will provide free copies of the notice on request. Employers can also download the notice from the Board’s website. [The notice is not yet available]. 
    • In addition to the physical posting, the rule requires every covered employer to post the notice on an internet or intranet site if personnel rules and policies are customarily posted there. Employers are not required to distribute the posting by email, Twitter or other electronic means.
    • The notice must be posted in English and in another language if at least 20% of employees are not proficient in English and speak the other language. The Board will provide translations of the notice, and of the required link to the Board’s website, in the appropriate languages.
    • Failure to post the notice may be treated as an unfair labor practice under the National Labor Relations Act. The Board investigates allegations of unfair labor practices made by employees, unions, employers, or other persons, but does not initiate enforcement action on its own.

    Folks, between this posting requirement and the possibility of the Board imposing quickie union elections, now is no time to play the role of the ostrich and stick your head in the sand. If you wish to keep your workplace union-free, get yourself a good labor and employment attorney and discuss some proactive measures you can take now to keep the unions out.