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Bills seek to thwart ‘speedy’ union elections

Republican lawmakers in the House and Senate have introduced legislation that seeks to halt efforts by the National Labor Relations Board to change union election procedures.


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The NLRB in February had reintroduced proposed changes that seek to streamline the union election process — changes that are opposed by many retailers.

In response to the NLRB efforts — which had been voided once before by a District Court on procedural grounds — two bills were introduced: The Workforce Democracy and Fairness Act (HR 4321) was introduced by House Education and the Workforce Committee chairman John Kline, R-Minn., and Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions ranking member Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn. (Senate bill not yet assigned); and the Employee Privacy Protection Act (HR 4321) was introduced by House Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions Subcommittee chairman Phil Roe, R-Tenn.

“We applaud chairman Kline, Rep. Roe and Sen. Alexander for fighting back against the NLRB’s efforts to erode employer and employee rights,” said Bill Hughes, SVP, government affairs at Retail Industry Leaders Association, which represents large retailers and suppliers. “The proposed ambush election rule is deeply concerning as it jeopardizes employee access to information and silences employers’ dissent.”

The NLRB proposals, he said, “threaten the rights and privacy of employees, providing union officials access to personal information and creating ample opportunity for abuse.”

“Congress must act to halt the activist agenda of a rogue NLRB,” Hughes concluded.

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