Labor Relations Update

Tag Archives: General Counsel

Senate Confirms Appointment of William J. Emanuel to NLRB; Board Has Full Complement,- For Now

In a 49-47 vote today, the Senate confirmed William J. Emanuel’s appointment to the NLRB.  Once Mr. Emanuel is sworn in, it will be first time since 2015 that the NLRB has had a full five members.  Before 2015, years of gridlock often saw the Board at less than full strength, which resulted in all sorts of mayhem, … Continue Reading

HR Generalist’s Threat To Bring In Union Not Protected, NLRB Rules

One of the most interesting things about labor relations is the unusual situations human resources professionals have to deal with on a day to day basis.  If you are at a cocktail party with a human resources professional, ask them what the most unusual thing they’ve ever encountered on the job and chances are you’ll … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Holds that Lafe Solomon Improperly Served as NLRB General Counsel

The Supreme Court has dealt another blow to the stability of the National Labor Relations Board. In a 6-2 decision, in, National Labor Relations Board v. SW General, Inc. DBA Southwest Ambulance, USSC Case No. 15-1251 (March 21, 2017),  the  Court held that the NLRB’s prior Acting General Counsel, Lafe Solomon, who served as acting GC while awaiting … Continue Reading

DC Circuit: NLRB Acting General Counsel Solomon’s Tenure Violated Vacancy Statute, Unfair Labor Practice Complaint Unauthorized

The political gridlock in Washington DC caused several years of tumult at the NLRB, spawning two Supreme Court decisions (Noel Canning and New Process Steel) and several courts of appeals decisions regarding the Board’s ability to act without regular appointments, and resulted in scores of decisions having to be reconsidered by a newly constituted Board.  Most … Continue Reading

Furloughed NLRB Employees Return to Work — Will GC Nominee Griffin be Next?

On the same day that furloughed federal government employees are returning to work, it is being reported that a roll call vote will be scheduled in the Senate to invoke cloture (i.e., end debate) on the nomination of Richard Griffin to be General Counsel of the NLRB.  The vote is reportedly scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 28, 2013.  We assume that cloture … Continue Reading

I Just Want to Testify

I had the opportunity last week to testify before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and the Workforce, Subcomittee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.  The subject of my testimony was “What to Look for from the New NLRB.”  A copy of my written testimony is here, and I trust readers will find it of interest. With … Continue Reading

Employer Merely Granted Employee’s Wish To Be Terminated, NLRB Div. Of Advice Rules

Social media permeates society.  It was inevitable that the increased use of smart phones and various communications platforms such as Facebook and Twitter would clash with the workplace.  We have noted several instances where the NLRB has alleged that employer action in response to social media posts is unlawful, as well as its seemingly endless review … Continue Reading

NLRB Pulls Back A Little More On Policy Frenzy, Finds Code Of Conduct Does Not Violate The Act

As we have seen repeatedly in the last year, the NLRB has taken it upon itself to police employer policies often finding a phrase or two to be a violation of the Act.  In recent months we have seen the NLRB seemingly pullback on this trend, taking a much closer look at the context of … Continue Reading

Holiday Season Extravaganza: NLRB Issues Flurry Of Law Changing Decisions

Last week the NLRB issued several significant decisions.   In the press release announcing the decisions, the agency noted that most were actually issued “the week of December 10, but were issued this week following editing and formatting which is typical for the final decisions in a Member’s term.”  This is a reference to Member Hayes’ … Continue Reading

NLRB Division, Some “At-Will” Clauses Ok

The Board’s excruciatingly close scrutiny of employer policies continues as the agency looks for opportunities to expand its juridiction by rooting out all evil lurking in handbooks and other written employment policies.  The NLRB has taken the position that certain “at-will” language in handbooks, language that in various forms exists in virtually every private employer’s handbook in … Continue Reading

NLRB: Employer’s Harassment Investigation Lawful, But Not Resulting Discipline

As the end of its fiscal year approaches (September 30), the NLRB pushes more decisions out than it has in the last several weeks.  Not a whole lot are of note, honestly.  There seems to be an uptick of default judgments being issued,-findings of violations of the NLRA without a formal hearing,–but it is difficult … Continue Reading

Acting NLRB GC Issues Additional Report On Social Media – Somewhat Useful

The Acting General Counsel of the NLRB has issued today an “updated” report on social media cases.   As we have reported frequently here, the NLRB has taken action against employers who clamp down on employee use of social media that may implicate the National Labor Relations Act.  At times, the NLRB has struggled with … Continue Reading

Rhyme or Reason? Trying to Make Sense of the NLRB’s Social Media Cases

Since the NLRB’s Office of the General Counsel (“OGC”) issued the first “Facebook” complaint in American Medical Response of Connecticut, Inc. in October, 2010, dozens of unfair labor practice charges involving social media have been filed, the Acting General Counsel has identified social media cases as a priority, and gallons of electronic ink have been … Continue Reading

NLRB Issues Complaint in NY Facebook Case

In its latest effort to address social media in the workplace, the National Labor Relations Board announced in a May 18 press release that it had filed a complaint against a New York non-profit organization alleging that it unlawfully terminated five employees who complained about working conditions on Facebook. According to the complaint filed by … Continue Reading

NLRB Acting General Counsel Clarifies Duty to Provide Information in Bargaining

In a May 17 memorandum, NLRB Acting General Counsel Lafe Solomon furnished guidelines to Regional Directors concerning parties’ obligation to provide information in collective bargaining negotiations.  GC Memorandum 11-13  traces the development of two different analytical frameworks for assessing a party’s obligation to provide requested information to its bargaining counterpart.  The first applies to cases involving … Continue Reading

NLRB Chairman, Acting General Counsel Defend Recent Actions in Correspondence to House Subcommittee

NLRB Chairman Wilma Liebman and Acting General Counsel Lafe Solomon have submitted letters to a House subcommittee in response to witness testimony criticizing recent activity of the Board and the Acting General Counsel.  The testimony was given at a February 11th hearing on “Emerging Trends at the National Labor Relations Board” before the House Subcommittee on Health, Employment, … Continue Reading

NLRB Adopts Enhanced Remedies in Refusal to Bargain Case

The National Labor Relations Board has ordered an employer to bargain with a union for at least 16 hours per week and to submit a progress report to the NLRB Regional Director every 30 days.  The case, Gimrock International involved an employer who, the Board found, had for several years failed to bargain in good faith for a first contract with the union … Continue Reading

NLRB GC To Regional Directors: Scrutinize Arbitration Decisions That May Implicate the NLRA

The Acting General Counsel of the NLRB, Lafe Solomon, continued to shake up the way matters are handled at the agency, by issuing new guidelines for the handling of pre- and post-arbitration cases.  The new policy guidelines will have an immediate impact on cases where the employment action (usually a discharge) has prompted both a grievance (alleging … Continue Reading
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