Happy Labor Day weekend! Over the next 6 business days, I’ll have a series of short posts addressing common questions that employers have about the law. If there is an “FAQ” that you would like for me to address, please let me know in the comments box.
I may also have more in-depth postings as circumstances warrant.
Employer FAQ No. 6: We don’t have a union. Do I still have to display that new NLRB poster?
Maybe. If you are covered under the National Labor Relations Act, then you have to display the new poster, which explains employees’ right to join a union and engage in other activity protected by the NLRA. Unless you are a federal contractor, in which case, you don’t.
Now, wasn’t that easy?
There is actually a fairly simple explanation for this. Back in 2009, the Obama Administration began requiring federal contractors to post what we liked to call the “anti-Beck” poster.
(Now that I think about it, maybe the explanation isn’t that simple.)
OK, OK, let me try again. See, back under the Bush Administration, federal contractors were required to post a notice telling employees that they had the right under Communication Workers v. Beck to withhold the portion of their union dues that went to support political and other activities unrelated to collective bargaining. We called this the Beck poster, for obvious reasons.
When President Obama came into office, he issued an Executive Order 13496 requiring federal contractors to post a notice that contained content that was much more “union-friendly” and, as it so happens, had content identical to the content of the new NLRA poster.
For that reason, federal contractors will not be required to post the new NLRB poster, which would say exactly the same thing as the “anti-Beck” posters that they already have up. But all other NLRA-covered employers will have to have the new NLRB poster up by November 14. (The NLRB poster is expected to be available on the Board’s website beginning November 1.)
How do I know whether I’m covered by the NLRA? Generally, if you are a private employer in interstate commerce, you are covered. (Public employers, railway and airline employers, and agricultural employees are among the exceptions.)
FAQ No. 2: “What does ‘right to work’ mean?”
Don’t forget to send me your own employer FAQs! And don’t forget, if you vote for Pedro Employment & Labor Insider, all of your wildest dreams will come true.