The National Labor Relations Board (the “NLRB”) recently issued a new decision, Stericycle, Inc., that broadly affects how most employers will think about their employment handbooks and policies. Employer should consider implementing a number of best practices to reduce their risk.
Articles Discussing Protected Concerted Activity Under The NLRA.
Last May, NLRB General Counsel (GC) Jennifer A. Abruzzo released Memorandum 23-08 claiming employers that require non-compete agreements violate the National Labor Relations Act.
On August 31, 2023, the National Labor Relations Board issued its 3-1 decision in American Federation for Children, Inc. 372 NLRB No. 137, overturning Amnesty International, 368 NLRB No. 112 (2019), and dramatically expanding the definition of what constitutes “protected concerted activity” under Section 7 of the National Labor
The National Labor Relations Board has returned to the “totality of the circumstances” test for determining when individual employee action constitutes protected concerted activity. Miller Plastic Products, Inc., 372 NLRB No. 134 (Aug. 25, 2023). Employee activity will be assessed under the previous tests of Meyers Industries Inc., 281 NLRB 882 (1986), using a holistic, fact-based approach to determine whether individual complaints or protests have a link to group action.
General workplace rules are considered “presumptively unlawful” under the new NLRB standard if they could be interpreted to limit employee rights.
For Questions / More Information
To discuss how the Stericycle decision affects your organization, and for assistance in reviewing and revising your workplace policies, please contact your HRW attorney or:
On Wednesday, August 2, 2023, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or the “Board”) issued its long-awaited decision in Stericycle, Inc., 372 NLRB No. 113 (2023) wherein it adopted a new legal framework for assessing whether workplace rules violate the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”).
On August 2, 2023, in Stericycle, Inc., 372 NLRB No. 113 (2023), the National Labor Relations Board adopted a strict new legal standard for evaluating the validity of workplace rules under the National Labor Relations Act (“the Act”).
If you read our blog, you know that the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or the “Board”) has been feeling particularly spicy this year. Well, they are at it again, and this time, they’ve issued a decision in Stericycle, Inc. that requires a very close look at your handbooks and policies.
The National Labor Relations Board has again revised its standard for assessing whether an employer’s facially neutral work rules (rules that do not explicitly restrict Section 7 activities) unlawfully restrict employee activity protected under the National Labor Relations Act. Stericycle, Inc., 372 NLRB No. 113 (2023).
The National Labor Relations Board has narrowed the rights of employers to discipline employees who, while engaged in protected concerted activity under the National Labor Relations Act, engaged in abusive conduct. Lion Elastomers LLC, 372 NLRB No. 82 (2023).
On August 2, the National Labor Relations Board issued its decision in Stericycle, Inc., adopting a new legal standard for how the Board will evaluate workplace rules and policies that are challenged on the grounds that they interfere with or restrict employees’ National Labor Relations Act rights to engage in concerted workplace activity (“Section 7 rights”). The Stericycle decision overrules the previously articulated standard set forth by the Trump NLRB in Boeing Co. (2017) and LA Specialty Produce Co. (2019). The Stericycle decision was decided on a 3-1 basis, with Board Member Marvin Kaplan dissenting.
In Stericycle, the Board held that the prior Boeing/LA Specialty Produce standard established by the Republican-dominated Trump Board permitted employers to adopt overbroad work rules that chill employees’ exercise of their Section 7 rights. “Boeing gave too little consideration to the chilling effect that work rules can have on workers’ Section 7 rights. Under the new standard, the Board will carefully consider both the potential impact of work rules on employees and the interests that employers articulate in support of their rules. By requiring employers to narrowly tailor their rules to serve those interests, the Board will better support the policies of the National Labor Relations Act,” said NLRB Chairman Lauren McFerran.
On August 2, 2023, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) adopted a new burden-shifting standard for evaluating whether work rules infringe upon employees’ rights under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA)—that may require employers to narrowly tailor rules to avoid violating the act.
Two important principles under the National Labor Relations Act are worth reiterating to construction employers: first, employees cannot be disciplined for engaging in activity protected by that Act; and, second, employers may still discipline employees in the wake of protected activity as long as the discipline occurs for unrelated misconduct.