This story by Mike Hall was published by the AFL-CIO blog on Dec. 22, 2010.
Most workers have seen notices about their right to a minimum wage or safe workplace posted in the company break room or elsewhere on the job. Employers are required to post those notices by federal law.
But there is no requirement for employers to post any sort of notice about workers’ rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), including the right to form a union. Now, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is proposing a rule that would require employers to post such notices in the workplace.
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka says the proposed rule is “a common sense policy needed in today’s workplace.”
“Every working person in America deserves to know his or her rights… [The rule]…ensures that workers’ rights are effectively communicated in the workplace. It is necessary in the face of widespread misunderstanding about the law and many workers’ justified fear of exercising their rights under it,” Trumka said.
According to the proposed rule, published in the Federal Register, the NLRB believes that “many employees protected by the NLRA are unaware of their rights under the statute. The intended effects of this action are to increase knowledge of the NLRA among employees, to better enable the exercise of rights under the statute, and to promote statutory compliance by employers and unions.”
Federal contractors must post such notices and the new proposed rule mirrors that requirement. The NLRB says notices would inform workers that they have “the right to act together to improve wages and working conditions, to form, join and assist a union, to bargain collectively with their employer, and to choose not to do any of these activities. It provides examples of unlawful employer and union conduct and instructs employees how to contact the NLRB with questions or complaints.”
“When workers know their rights, they can make the best decisions for themselves and their families.”