WASHINGTON, D.C. | March 19, 2015
In just a few short weeks, a regulatory scheme that many Americans never heard of will become a reality in almost every private workplace across the country.
Today, workers and employers rely on a fair process for union elections. Under the current process, employers have time to raise concerns, and more importantly, time to speak with their employees about union representation. Under the current system, workers have an opportunity to gather the information they need to make the best decision for their families.
But unless Congress acts, that will all change. Under the guise of streamlining union elections, the National Labor Relations Board is imposing draconian changes that will undermine the rights workers, employers, and unions have long enjoyed.
The board’s rule arbitrarily limits the amount of time employers have to legally prepare for the election, and it denies workers a reasonable opportunity to make informed decisions about joining a union. The rule also delays answers to important questions – including voter eligibility – until after the election, which means the integrity of the election results will be compromised before a single ballot is cast.
To add insult to injury, the board’s rule will also force employers to provide union organizers with their employees’ personal information, including email addresses, phone numbers, work schedules, and home addresses. Instead of advancing a plan to help stop union intimidation and coercion, the board is actually making it easier for labor bosses to harass employees and their families.
Are there times when delays occur under the current system? Of course, but delay is the exception, not the rule. In fact, right now the median time between the filing of an election petition and the election is 38 days. Yet under the board’s new rule, a union election could take place in as little as 11 days. Eleven days.
This is a radical rewrite of labor policies that have served our nation’s best interests for decades. Unfortunately, this is what we’ve come to expect from the National Labor Relations Board.
Let’s not forget, this is the same federal agency that tried dictating where a private employer had to run its business. This is the same agency restricting workers’ right to secret ballot election. This is the same agency ignoring the law by asserting its jurisdiction over religious institutions. This is the same agency tying employers in union red tape and empowering labor leaders to gerrymander our nation’s workplaces.
This is a federal agency that is simply out of control, and it is our responsibility to do something about it. This resolution, which I am proud to sponsor along with Senator Lamar Alexander, invokes Congress’s authority under the Congressional Review Act to block the NLRB’s ambush election rule and anything substantially like it.
If the board or my Democrat colleagues want to pursue responsible reforms to improve the union election process, then I stand ready to work together on that effort.
But if you believe employers should be free to speak to their employees during a union organizing campaign, then support this resolution.
If you believe workers should be free to make an informed decision about whether to join a union, then support this resolution.
If you believe we should protect rather than threaten employee privacy, then support this resolution.
Finally, if you believe workers, employers, and union leaders deserve a fair election process, then reject the board’s ambush election rule by supporting this resolution.
I encourage my colleagues to stand with America’s workers and job creators by voting “yes” on S. J. Res. 8.
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