The Union Guy is at it again. The House passed the Biden Administration’s PRO Act yesterday and it is a doozy. Unions have tried for years to get this law on the books. Titled “Protecting the Right to Organize Act of 2021” it is a New Deal-level act that would make union organizing very easy and give the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) sharp teeth.
Here are the five biggest changes:
- Unions could override the “Right to Work” laws now found in more than two dozen states and collect dues from employees who opt out.
- Employer interference with elections—including the Company-sponsored meeting to influence union elections– are forbidden and employees could cast union votes away from company property.
- In an effort to keep the union in place, newly certified unions could seek arbitration and mediation if first contract negotiation reach impasse.
- An employee’s immigration status could not be considered when determining the terms of employment.
- The NLRB can levy fines on companies and executives who violate workers’ rights. Corporate directors and other company officers could be held liable as well.
Will it pass the Senate? Right now, they do not have the necessary 60 votes. What unions do have is a new president who has made a very public commitment to employees: this sweeping legislation, the nomination of former union official Marty Walsh to head the DOL, the firing of the General Counsel for the NLRB, the firing of the EEOC General Counsel last week, and the ability to pack the NLRB all point to a president who will use every power he has to help labor.
WHAT CAN I DO? All is not lost! We have decades of experience in workplace culture and union organizing, including a new training package. There are several lawful steps you can take to keep your employees happy without adding a third party to your dance card. Employees are often surprised when they discover the internal procedures and policies in place to help them. Contact us to review the options. We can help.