Unfair Labor Practice

Unfair labour practices are a set of all actions taken by employers or unions that are illegal under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and all other labour laws. These rules comprise interaction between the employers, the employee, and the union. It also protects workers and employees from unfair treatment by employers and unions. The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has created an extensive list of employer actions that it considers would interfere with an individual employee’s labour rights.

The National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) gives the employees the right to act together to improve the terms and conditions of their employers for the proper functioning of the system by forming a union, joining a union, or otherwise. To preserve these employee rights, NLRA has set up some rules and regulations for union elections, collective bargaining, and other tasks. Not only this, but it also prohibits employers and unions to take certain actions that interfere with the employee’s rights. These certain actions are referred to as “unfair labour practices ”

Unfair Labor Practices by Employers 

The NLRA prohibits the employer from performing certain actions like : 

  1. Interfering with the right of the employee to join or form a union in an organization. Most of the time, these employers include supervisors who make threatening statements, question employees who speak about labour rights and make false statements to workers seeking unionization. 
  2. Employers cannot dominate or provide illegal assistance or support to a labour union. They may not establish their own union or interfere with any labour organization. 
  3. They cannot discriminate between employees to encourage or discourage membership in any labour organization and replace workers who strike to protect against unfair labour practices. 
  4. Employers must not refuse to engage in good-faith collective bargaining involving unions.
  5. Making a hot cargo agreement with a union in which the employer promises to stop doing business with another employer with which the union has a dispute.
  6. An employer may not discharge or discriminate against an employee in terms and conditions of employment because he or she has filed complaints or charges against him and given testimony. 

Unfair Labor practices by Unions

Other than employers, NLRA prohibits unions from : 

  1. Restraining or coercing employees by threatening those employees who don’t want to join a union.
  2. Engaging in strikes, boycotts, or other coercive actions for an illegal purpose. 
  3. Refusing to engage in good-faith collective bargaining for example refusing to listen to any of the employer’s proposals. 
  4. Causing or trying to cause an employer to discriminate against employees for the purpose of encouraging and discouraging union membership. 
  5. Trying to get an employer to agree to pay for the work that has not been performed. This is called featherbedding and is illegal to perform. 
  6. Striking, picketing, or engaging in a collective work stoppage at any health care institution without giving required notice to the institution and Federal Mediation and conciliation service. 

An employer, employee, or union that believes an unfair labour practice has been committed in an organization may file a complaint/charge with NLRB. Remember you must file a complaint within six months of the incident happening.

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