WASHINGTON, D.C. | June 2, 2017
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20500
May 30, 2017
Dear Mr. President:
The Committee on Education and the Workforce is committed to working with your administration to promote job growth, encourage economic opportunity, and protect the rights of workers. We applaud the many steps your administration has taken thus far to accomplish these goals. In particular, we are pleased Phillip A. Miscimarra was named Chairman of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or the Board). However, we are concerned that two seats on the Board remain vacant, and we urge you to nominate expeditiously two qualified candidates for those vacancies.
In 1935, Congress passed the National Labor Relations Act
(NLRA) to guarantee the rights of workers to organize and collectively bargain. In 1947, Congress reformed the law to enact a basic set of protections for employers, such as the right to communicate with their workforce on union-related matters. Both the original law and the amendments were designed to provide a level playing field between employers and unions. Equally important, the NLRA ensures that employees have the ability to make free and informed decisions about joining a union or refraining from joining a union.
To help enforce the NLRA, the NLRB was created to serve as an unbiased judge over labor disputes. Yet in recent years, the Board has not acted as a neutral arbiter. Instead, it has sought to dismantle the longstanding rights of workers and employers in order to advance the interests of union leaders. This culture of union favoritism has put workers and job creators at a significant disadvantage, which is not at all what Congress intended when it enacted the law.
As the committee with jurisdiction over the NLRB and the NLRA, we have been dismayed by many of the Board’s actions over the past eight years. Timely appointments to fill the two NLRB vacancies can return the Board to a more balanced approach. With your help, the NLRB can be restored to a body that fairly and objectively applies the law. This issue is of great importance to America’s workers and job creators; therefore, we encourage you to fill these vacancies with qualified individuals as quickly as possible.
Virginia Foxx, Chairwoman
Tim Walberg, Chairman, Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions
For a PDF of the letter, click here