News & Events

News & Events

12.22.2014

NLRB Makes Two Big Changes That Will Affect All Employers: Lifting the Ban on Using Company Computers for Union-related Communications and Faster Union Elections

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Does Your Email Policy Run Afoul of the New Rule?
If your email policy says that your computer systems exist to facilitate company business and therefore “all such equipment and access should be used for business purposes only,” you may be interested to know that the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) does not agree with you. After coming out on the losing end of an organizing campaign, the Communications Workers of America (CWA) decided that one of the reasons they lost was the employer’s policy that prohibited employees from using the company’s email system to criticize the employer and campaign for the union. Last week, the NLRB agreed with the CWA.

Union Election Procedures Now Moving at a Faster Pace
They told you it was coming and now it is here. The NLRB proposed new union election regulations intended to take effect April 14, 2015. In response to union complaints that the organizing process favors employers, the NLRB issued rules that “modernize and streamline” the representation process. Today, a union election typically occurs 38 days after the union files a petition with the NLRB. The unions complain that employers use this time to educate their employees and persuade them to vote against the unions. Under the new rules, the election will occur within 14 to 21 days after the petition, but could happen as soon as 10 to 12 days after the petition, hence the term “Ambush Election.”

View the full article (PDF) for a deeper look at the recent NLRB changes.


For all other inquiries, please contact the Labor and Employment Practice Group at Lane Powell:

206.223.7000 Seattle
503.778.2100 Portland
907.277.9511 Anchorage
employlaw@lanepowell.com