The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Acting General Counsel Peter Sung Ohr (AGC) has announced in a memorandum that his office will return to “vigorous enforcement” of employee rights under Section 7 rights of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).
Articles Discussing Protected Concerted Activity Under The NLRA.
On March 31, 2021, Acting General Counsel Peter Ohr issued a memorandum addressing the concept of “concerted activity.” As brief background, under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act, employees have the right to engage in “concerted” activities for the purpose of “mutual aid or protection.”
What constitutes “concerted”
Recently, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), in a split decision 2-1, approved a California-based ambulance company’s implementation of a social media policy that prohibited employees from “inappropriate communications” related to the company. The NLRB’s ruling reversed a decision by an administrative law judge, back in October 2019, that concluded
Employees have a broad legal right to communicate with one another about wages, benefits, and other employment terms. To effectuate this broad right, the National Labor Relations Board has required employers to exclude such information from their confidentiality policies. In The Boeing Co.
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a supplemental decision on May 20, 2020, finding lawful a policy prohibiting employees from possessing or using their cell phones on the manufacturing floor or at their workstations.
On March 25, 2020, a National Labor Relations Board Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) emphasized the broad reach of Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (“Act”) in non-union settings. Ground Zero Foundation d/b/a Academy for Creative Enrichment, Case 4-CA-245956. Charging Party was hired as a summer camp counselor, but
Overruling Banner Estrella Medical Center, 362 NLRB 1108 (2015), the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has held that investigative confidentiality rules are lawful Category 1 rules under The Boeing Company, 365 NLRB No. 154 (2017), where by their terms the rules apply for the duration of any investigation. Apogee Retail LLC d/b/a Unique Thrift Store, 368 NLRB No. 144 (2019). Where a rule does not, on its face, apply for the duration of any investigation, a determination is made whether one or more legitimate justifications exist for requiring confidentiality even after an investigation is over. If legitimate justifications exist, a determination is then made whether those justifications outweigh the effect of requiring post-investigation confidentiality on employees’ exercise of their Section 7 rights.
On December 17, 2019, in a 3-1 decision split along party lines, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) restored to employers the right to restrict employees from using company email systems for nonbusiness purposes. The decision, issued in Caesars Entertainment Corp., reverses the NLRB’s 2014 ruling in Purple Communications, which held that workplace rules prohibiting employee email use for union activity were presumptively invalid under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (Section 7). Because Section 7 applies to all employers, not just unionized ones, this NLRB ruling affects almost every U.S. employer that provides a corporate email system.
The National Labor Relations Board has reminded employers that they must tolerate a certain degree of heated discourse during a union organizing campaign before discipline or termination may be warranted.
In a decision that affects both union and non-union employers, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or Board) has taken what is likely the first step toward reining in the expanded scope of what the Obama-era Board considered “protected, concerted activity” under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has narrowed the circumstances under which a complaint made by an individual employee is considered concerted activity under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). Alstate Maintenance, LLC, 367 NLRB No. 68 (Jan. 11, 2019).
May union organizers lawfully use their employer’s email system for union-related communications? This question has been asked and answered, asked again and answered differently, and is now being asked a third time. This week the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued an invitation for comment on rescinding or revising the current rule of law.
As most employers are aware, the National Labor Relations Board’s decision in The Boeing Co., 365 NLRB No. 154 (2017), established a new standard that significantly broadens the scope of rules, policies, and handbook provisions that lawfully may be maintained under the National Labor Relations Act. The General Counsel’s recent Memorandum GC 18-04 (Guidance on Handbook Rules Post-Boeing) provides important guidance about how the Board’s decision will affect many types of workplace rules, including taking on the challenging task of categorizing confidentiality rules as lawful or unlawful.
In The Boeing Co., 365 NLRB No. 154 (2017), the Board approved the maintenance of rules promoting “harmonious interactions and relationships,” and requiring civility in the workplace, as categorically lawful. “To the extent the Board in past cases has held that it violates the Act to maintain rules requiring employees to foster ‘harmonious interactions and relationships’ or to maintain basic standards of civility in the workplace, those cases are hereby overruled.”
Traditionally, employers rely on personnel policies and employee handbooks to communicate workplace expectations and benefits to employees. Earlier this decade, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) began aggressively scrutinizing those policies and concluding that many “could”—as opposed to would or did—interfere with employee-protections arising from the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”). At the time, many well-intentioned policies fell short of the NLRB’s broad, subjective analysis, triggering policy revisions or deletions. Earlier this month, however, the NLRB General Counsel issued a new guidance document, Memorandum GC 18-04, confirming that the NLRB has switched from the earlier antagonistic approach to a more balanced analysis of standard personnel policies. The NLRB’s new approach will help employers communicate important workplace policies and reduce the threat of subjective unfair labor practice charges.