Description: On December 12, 2017, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) took the first step towards rolling back a 2014 rule that simplified the union election process by which working people can join together to bargain for better wages and working conditions. The NLRB announced the issuance of a Request for Information (RFI), asking for public input on the 2014 election rule. The election rule, which has been upheld by a federal court of appeals, includes a series of reforms which eliminate unnecessary delay in the election process and modernize agency procedures. The NLRB currently has a full five-member Board, with 3 Republicans and 2 Democrats.
Fair Economy Impact: The NLRB protects the rights of most private-sector employees to join together, with or without a union, to improve their wages and working conditions. Employees covered by the National Labor Relations Act are guaranteed the right to form, join, decertify, or assist a labor organization, and to bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing, or to refrain from such activities. The NLRB’s decision to reexamine the rule demonstrates that the Trump board majority has little interest in maintaining an efficient election process for this nation’s workers. Ironically, the NLRB will accept electronic responses to the RFI for the election rule that, if rolled back, will affect the ability of workers to file electronic election petitions.
The majority of American workers would vote for union representation if they could. However, the intensity with which employers have opposed organizing efforts and the continuing tilt of the legal and policy playing field against workers seeking to bargain collectively, has led to a decline in union membership. Today’s announcement makes it clear the Trump board will work to further rig the system against working people.