Thursday, August 19, 2021: NLRB To “Aggressively Seek” Injunctions to Stop Alleged Unfair Labor Practices
In a memo to all Regional Directors, Officers-in-Charge, and Resident Officers, the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) newly (and controversial) appointed General Counsel, Jennifer Abruzzo, stated,
“I believe that Section 10(j) injunctions are one of the most important tools available to effectively enforce the Act [National Labor Relations Act]. Effective enforcement requires that we timely protect employees’ Section 7 right to exercise their free choice regarding engaging in union and protected concerted activities, including organizing and collective bargaining. Section 10(j) provides the tool to ensure that employees’ rights will be adequately protected from remedial failure due to the passage of time. During my tenure as General Counsel, I intend to aggressively seek Section 10(j) relief where necessary to preserve the status quo and the efficacy of final Board orders.”
The Board announced the release of the 2-page memo (and the memo itself) via a press release. Section 10 of the Act (Prevention of Unfair Labor Practices), Section (j) (injunctions), authorizes the NLRB to seek temporary injunctions against employers and unions in federal district courts to stop alleged unfair labor practices while the case is being litigated before administrative law judges and the Board.
The memo breaks down the “extremely positive results” of the most recent Section 10(j) initiatives.
In The Know
To initiate an injunctive action in federal District Court to obtain interim injunctive relief, the Regional Director must first identify the need and get the ball rolling by submitting a request to the Injunction Litigation Branch (ILB) within the NLRB. The ILB then makes its recommendation to the NLRB General Counsel, who ultimately must seek Board authorization if she approves of the injunction. Once the Board has authorized the injunctive request to be filed with the federal court, Regions then file the appropriate motion with the appropriate federal District Court, absent settlement of the underlying dispute.
There are 15 categories of labor disputes in which Section 10(j) injunctions may be appropriate.