The NLRB's New Work Rules Guidance
On March 18, the National Labor Relations Board's general counsel, Richard F. Griffin Jr., issued Memorandum GC 15-04, seeking to clarify what types of employer policies and rules are considered lawful and which are likely to interfere unlawfully with employees' rights under the National Labor Relations Act. All employers, regardless of whether they have union-represented employees, are urged to compare their workplace policies and rules to the memorandum to determine if any of them might be considered illegal by the current NLRB.
By way of background, Section 7 of the NLRA gives employees the right to organize, to bargain collectively, and "to engage in other concerted activities for the purpose of . . . mutual aid and protection. More simply, employees enjoy the federally protected right to act on behalf of themselves and their co-workers regarding wages, hours and other terms and conditions of employment, whether unionized or not. This includes such activities as complaining about pay, benefits or discipline, and extends to more assertive actions, such as seeking union assistance, walking off the job, picketing or filing a formal petition with the NLRB for a union election.
[Full text is available in the PDF below.]