Duke Faculty file for union election

This morning, non-tenure track faculty at Duke University took the first step to forming a labor union by filing a recognition petition with the National Labor Relations Board.  Patterson Harkavy attorneys Mike Okun, Narendra Ghosh, and Paul Smith represent the faculty. Duke faculty have already formed Duke Teaching First, an organization of non-tenure track faculty

NLRB Strikes Blow Against Bans on Class Action Arbitrations

The National Labor Relations Board recently ruled in favor of both union and non-union private sector employees on a significant issue concerning workplace litigation.  At issue were mandatory arbitration agreements signed upon employment that force employees to bring claims one by one in front of an arbitrator and prohibit employees joining as a group to arbitrate their

Recess Appointments Made to NLRB

President Obama this past week appointed three members to the National Labor Relations Board.  They include Sharon Block, who most recently served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Congressional Affairs with the US Department of Labor; Terence Flynn, who was Chief Counsel to current NLRB Board Member Brian Hayes, and; Richard Griffin, formerly General Counsel for the International

NLRB to Speed up Unionizing Elections

On December 21, The National Labor Relations Board voted 2-1 in favor of new steps to increase the speed of union elections.  The Board hopes to keep election and campaign time to less than 21 days.  Often, there are long delays to unionizing elections because of legal challenges brought by the employer.  The Board wants

Machinists’ Union and Boeing Work to Extend Contract

Last, week, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW) and Boeing reached a tentative agreement which would extend the Union’s contract for four years and, when ratified, will increase wages, maintain and improve traditional pensions and add new jobs.  The Union and Boeing have been in a troubled relationship recently since Boeing decided

Fourth Circuit Affirms Protected Concerted Activity Claim

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals recently decided NLRB v. White Oak Manor, a case involving an employee’s protected concerted activity, ruling in favor of the NLRB who sought to enforce an order in favor of the employee.  The employee, who was reprimanded for wearing a hat during work in violation of the company dress

Advances on Protecting Whistle-blowing and Social Networking of Employees

Two recent positive developments to report.  First, breaking new ground, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has charged a company with illegally firing an employee after she criticized her supervisor on her Facebook page.  The NLRB’s press release is here.  Coverage here. Under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act, all employees — even

Supreme Court Rules on 2-Member Labor Board and Workplace Privacy

Two labor and employment decisions were released by the U.S. Supreme Court this past week.  In the first, City of Ontario v. Quon, the Court unanimously held (with Scalia concurring separately) that the government employer’s search of employee text messages was reasonable under the Fourth Amendment.  Unlike private employers, public employers are constrained (somewhat) by