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21 May 2014 North Carolina Public Employee Union Votes to Allow College Athletes to Join

  ESPN is reporting that “the State Employees Association of North Carolina’s governing board voted Friday to open the group’s membership to athletes at the state’s 17 public campuses, which would include Atlantic Coast Conference members North Carolina and North Carolina State.”  It was unclear whether this move would open the doors to SEANC actually bargaining on behalf of any public university athletes who decided to join.  A union spokesperson said, “What the group has…

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19 May 2014 “Picture Perfect”: NLRB ALJ Finds Company’s Photographing Of Employees Holding Demonstrations Inside Plant Illegal Along With Its Policy Limiting Employee Photography

  On Thursday, May 15, 2014, a NLRB Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) ruled an employer violated the National Labor Relations Act (Act) by photographing hundreds of employees who were conducting in-plant marches in support of their contract demands that were at the center of pending successor contract negotiations between a union and the company. The company argued its photography was justified because the employee marches disrupted production and it needed to monitor the situation. The ALJ, however, rejected the employer’s…

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14 May 2014 NLRB WEEKLY SUMMARY OF DECISIONS, May 5-9, 2014

  The Summary of NLRB decisions for the week of May 5-9, 2014, is now available on the NLRB’s website.       Keith BrodieKeith J. Brodie is a partner in Barnes & Thornburg LLP’s Grand Rapids, Michigan office. He devotes his practice exclusively to labor and employment law. He is a practitioner and counselor to his clients on labor matters including collective bargaining, union organizing, NLRB unfair labor practice charge defense, and labor strategies…

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13 May 2014 Board invites briefs on joint employer standard

  The NLRB continued to signal its intent to review and consider overturning established precedent with another call for briefs issued yesterday.  In its most recent request, the Board invited briefs from interested parties on the issue of joint employer status under the NLRA.  Under the Board’s current precedent (as stated in TLI, Inc., 271 NLRB 798 (1984)), joint employer status is based on whether each entity meaningfully affects employees’ terms and conditions of employment. …

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12 May 2014 NLRB invites briefs in Northwestern football case

  As we have previously covered, the votes have already been cast in the controversial Northwestern football union election, but the outcome of the election will not be known for quite some time.  The election ballots have been impounded, pending resolution of Northwestern University’s appeal to the Board of the Regional Director’s decision that the scholarship football players are employees under the NLRA.   Today, the Board issued a briefing schedule for the parties and…

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09 May 2014 NLRB General Counsel Expands Scope of Cases Where Board Will Seek 10(j) Relief

The NLRB’s General Counsel, Richard Griffin, issued a Memorandum recently discussing the NLRB’s stance on seeking injunctive relief under Section 10(j) of the NLRA.  Under Section 10(j), the NLRB can seek injunctive relief in federal district court to seek immediate redress and stop unfair labor practices.  Historically the NLRB has had the Regions focus on particular categories of cases which have been identified as appropriate for 10(j) relief.   The new Memorandum in many respects…

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08 May 2014 Timber! NLRB Cuts Down Another Employer Policy (this Time it is off-duty access)

  A nursing home had a policy forbidding employees for hanging around after the end of their shift unless they had previous permission to be on the premises from a supervisor.  The Union alleged that two employees were denied access to the facility to assist with processing grievances.   The NLRB, upholding the decision of the ALJ, found the nursing home’s policy was unlawful.  While the Board acknowledged that an employer can generally prohibit off-duty…

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06 May 2014 Jesuit University Lacks “Substantial Religious Character”

  An NLRB Regional Director has determined that Seattle University “lacks substantial religious character” and is therefore subject to the jurisdiction of the NLRB.   In response to a petition from non-tenure-track adjunct professors seeking to organize, the University asserted that it was not subject to the NLRB’s jurisdiction because it was a religiously operated university.  The regional director disagreed finding that the University “is not a church-operated institution.”   The Regional Director based his…

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02 May 2014 Can Your Employees Use Your Company’s E-Mail System To Solicit Support For A Union? The NLRB Is Going To Weigh In…

  On April 30, 2014, the NLRB signaled it may overturn a 2007 Bush-Board decision, Register Guard, that generally allows employers to prohibit employees from using work e-mail systems for non-business purposes, including union organizing purposes. In a pending case in California involving allegations against employer Purple Communications, Inc., an Administrative Law Judge noted the NLRB’s decision in Register Guard and ruled Purple Communications did not violate the NLRA by having a policy that prohibited…

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01 May 2014 REVERBERATIONS FOR SEIU CONTINUE REGARDING MICHIGAN DECISION TO STOP FORCED UNIONIZATION OF HOME HEALTH CARE WORKERS

  As we earlier reported, in 2012, Michigan’s Governor Snyder reversed his predecessor Jennifer Granholm’s stance that home health care workers were to be deemed public employees and thus members of SEIU Healthcare Michigan by signing legislation excluding them from the definition of public employees under state law.  The position of Governor Granholm’s administration on this issue was highly criticized with many suggesting it smacked of political re-payment.   Now the numbers are in and…

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