NLRB: Big Labor’s Stalking Horse?

Kate Gage
November 19. 2010
Daily Caller

For nearly two years, talk concerning labor law reform has centered on the Employee ‘Forced’ Choice Act (EFCA). As the Congressional session progressed and the small business community organized, the likelihood of EFCA’s passage — or any legislation eliminating the secret ballot and mandating binding arbitration — diminished. And as EFCA’s chances of passage began to fade, Big Labor shifted its attention to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), an independent federal agency whose mission is to “prevent and remedy unfair labor practices committed by private sector employers and unions.”

Union bosses worked behind the scenes to get handpicked advocates nominated to the board to advance their agenda. When labor radical Craig Becker wasn’t able to secure sufficient bipartisan support in the Senate to be seated on the NLRB, organized labor simply got their “payback” from the White House in the form of a recess appointment.

And Big Labor has not been shy in expressing what they want in return for the hundreds of millions they have spent electing politicians.

The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations’ (AFL-CIO) Stewart Acuff wrote in The Huffington Post, “It [sic] we aren’t able to pass the Employee Free Choice Act, we will work with President Obama and Vice President Biden and their appointees to the National Labor Relations Board to change the rules governing forming a union through administrative action…”

Now, with the election results in and Big Labor’s candidates having lost at the ballot box, union bosses are all about “chang[ing] the rules.”

Recently, the NLRB has taken action to favor labor bosses over employees and employers. Obama’s appointees to the board are carrying Big Labor’s water, and our freedoms and jobs are at risk.

Cases that have been decided and closed for years are now being reopened by these new board members, who aim to change pro-worker and pro-small business decisions into pro-union boss ones.

For example, most recently, the board backed unions in their practice of holding protest signs at small businesses who use contract workers, claiming that the signs are not coercive.

In addition, the NLRB is now considering implementing electronic voting services for remote elections as opposed to worksite elections where physical ballots are both cast and counted, a move that would open elections to potential fraud and workers to intimidation.

And now there is discussion that this “independent federal agency” will shorten the amount of time for workplace elections even though most take place within a month. While Big Labor bosses could begin planning and organizing months ahead of an election being called, small business owners could be caught unaware and have only a few days to make their case to their own employees.

And the list goes on and on. Little by little, union bosses are looking to leverage the actions of government bureaucrats doing their bidding, which will result in more people forced into unions and more money injected into Big Labor’s coffers.

Labor bosses are launching a full-force assault on workers and small businesses, using unelected government workers to do the heavy lifting. Union heads are the only ones who stand to benefit from the dangerous proposals making their way through the NLRB.

When the Workforce Fairness Institute (WFI) began its efforts to educate Americans about Big Labor’s agenda, we wanted to ensure that voters knew exactly what was happening in the halls of Congress so that they would be informed when going to the ballot box. But now a new threat has emerged — government bureaucrats appointed by President Obama pose the new danger to workers’ rights in our country.

Agencies like the NLRB are looking to “change the rules” and enact decisions that shorten union election time periods, open workers up to coercion and give Big Labor the upper hand when it comes to workplace organizing.

The Workforce Fairness Institute and its allies are prepared to educate workers and small business owners about the changing landscape of labor policy and will activate our network of supporters to put the brakes on Big Labor’s attempts to force unionization on workers through edicts handed down by faceless bureaucrats.

Katie Gage is executive director of the Workforce Fairness Institute (WFI).

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AZ Daily Sun--Coconino Voices: PRO Act legislation would hurt local businesses

— 05.13.2021 —
By: Julie Pastrik Arizona businesses and workers have had an incredibly challenging year given the economic slowdown that followed in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. However, local businesses and industries across the state are resilient and on the road to a strong recovery that will mean more jobs for Arizona workers and increased economic development to strengthen our communities. That is, as long as Congress does not move forward with potentially devastating legislation that would hurt local employers and employees alike while impeding our state’s economic recovery. Unfortunately, some members of Congress seem determined to do just that by pushing through the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act. As harmless as the name may sound, the PRO Act would have serious repercussions for local businesses, particularly smaller ones, while undermining long-standing rights for employees and threatening the growing gig economy that has helped provide much-needed income for so many during this time. Arizona is fortunate to have leaders like Senators Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema, who have both refrained from joining the vast majority of their Democratic colleagues in cosponsoring the PRO Act. In a slap in the face to Arizona workers, the PRO Act removes one of the most fundamental rights a worker has when it comes to voting in elections to determine whether to unionize: the secret ballot. Instead, workers could be forced to sign union authorization cards in front of other employees, their employer, or union organizers. This bill would also destroy workers’ right to privacy by allowing unions access to personal information, including their home address and personal phone number. If that doesn’t open the door to union intimidation and harassment, I don’t know what does. As if that was not bad enough, the PRO Act would create major new challenges for Arizona businesses, making it harder for them to create jobs, expand in their communities, and even keep their doors open. It would redefine what it means to be a “joint employer” under national labor law, greatly complicating existing relationships between franchisors and franchisees as well as between business owners, contractors, subcontractors, and vendors and suppliers. At the same time, it would interfere with attorney-client confidentiality and make it much more difficult for small businesses to secure a legal advice on labor issues. Particularly harmful during these times, the PRO Act would apply a failed policy from California to national labor law by using the “ABC” test to determine whether a worker is an independent contractor or employee. This makes it much harder to qualify as an independent contractor, threatening the freedom and flexibility that tens of thousands of Arizonans find in independent contracting and gig economy work. Ultimately, the PRO Act is bad public policy that only works for union leaders to inflate their falling ranks while threatening workers’ rights, undermining small businesses, and jeopardizing a growing part of our economy. This is not a good solution for Arizona, and Senators Sinema and Kelly should stay firm and not cosponsor this misguided legislation.
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