Senate bill targets NLRB creation of “micro” unions

By Jazz Shaw/

I joined in on a conference call this morning with Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA) where he discussed his new bill, the Representation Fairness Restoration Act. (S. 1843) This piece of legislation appears to be a companion bill matching the Workforce Democracy and Fairness Act (H.R. 3094) in the House. Without getting too far down in the weeds on this, the bill seeks to stop yet another curious decision by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) which would overturn more than seventy years of established precedent in terms of the number of workers you need in order to enter into a collective bargaining unit.

Sen. Isakson wrote about this in a recent op-ed.

On August 26, 2011, the NLRB decided to recklessly abandon this longstanding precedent. In its Specialty Healthcare decision, the NLRB decided that unions can now target a small group of employees doing the same job in the same location for organization purposes. For example, in one grocery store, the cashiers could form one “mini union,” the baggers could form another, the produce stockers could form yet another, and so on. This could potentially create several different unions within the same store location, making it easier for unions to gain access to employees and nearly impossible for employers to manage such fragmentation of the workforce.

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