NLRB attorney calls for a ban on mandatory anti-union gatherings.

general counsel to the National Labor Relations Board on Thursday issuance A memo arguing that the common employer practice of mandating workers to attend anti-union meetings is illegal under federal law, even though labor board precedent allows it.

Jennifer Abruzzo, attorney general, who enforces federal labor law by prosecuting violations, said her office will soon file a case with the working board that decides such questions and ask the board to reverse its precedent in meetings.

“This coercive leave is an anomaly in labor law, inconsistent with the law’s protection of employee free choice,” Ms Abruzzo said in a statement, citing the National Labor Relations Act. “I believe that the precedent of the NLRB case, which tolerates such meetings, conflicts with core business law principles, our legal language, and our congressional mandate.”

In recent months, high-profile employers such as Amazon and Starbucks, which have faced growing union campaigns, hundreds of meetings where unions try to persuade workers not to unionize, arguing that there is a “third party” that can come between management and workers.

Amazon officials and consultants, repeatedly told the workers According to testimony from the NLRB’s hearings on a union election in Alabama, mandatory meetings “could result in more salaries and benefits, or potentially less, than they had before the union.” last year.

the company spent more than $4 million last year about consultants who attend such meetings and look for workers on the warehouse floors.

However, many workers and union officials complain that these claims are false. extremely misleading. Unionized workers typically earn more than comparable non-union workers, and it is quite unusual for workers’ compensation to fall as a result of a union contract.

Wilma B. Liebman, who chaired the work board under President Barack Obama, said the work board would likely sympathize with Ms. Abruzzo’s argument and could reverse the precedent. However, he said it was unclear what practical impact the rollback would have, as many employees may feel compelled to attend anti-union meetings even though they are no longer required. “Those on the fence may be reluctant to disagree for fear of reprisal or ostracism,” Ms. Liebman wrote in an email.

According to a spokesperson, the board’s regional offices overseen by Ms. Abruzzo are also likely to file complaints against employers because of the meetings. A union, the Retail, Wholesale, and Department Store Syndicate, recently filed such a lawsuit in Bessemer, Ala, where it helped organize workers who wanted to unionize at an Amazon warehouse. A number of votes last week showed that union supporters narrowly outpaced union opponents in this election, but the outcome will depend on a few hundred contested votes, the status of which will be determined in the coming weeks.

A spokesperson for the working board said the outcome of the board’s “pioneer” case at mandatory meetings will bind other cases. The case is pending but his identity has not been determined.

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