The Labor Board Is Giving Employees More Rights To Complain


Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) grants employees the right to "engage in…concerted activities for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection." (emphasis added). This broad statutory language leaves room for subjective interpretation, and, over the years, the courts and the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) have refined the standard for what conduct is considered "concerted."

As explained by the current Chair of the Labor Board, Wilma Liebman, despite years of precedent dictating whether employee activity is truly "concerted," the public should expect "policy oscillations" resulting from changes in the political makeup of the Board. In several recent cases, the Obama Labor Board has shown a willingness to expand the definition of concerted activity to protect employees and labor unions. Employers (both organized and non-union) should take notice of the dramatic shift in the Labor Board's policies. Act now to avoid being caught in these changing tides.

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