Labor & Employment

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NLRB Requires Workplace Notice of Employees' NLRA Rights

Regulation requires both hard copy and intranet postings

August 31, 2011

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Make room for another posting on the lunchroom wall.

Claiming that "many employees protected by the NLRA are unaware of their rights" the National Labor Relations Board, in a 194 page opinion, issued its final rule requiring employers to post notices informing their employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). If you are an employer subject to the NLRA, beginning on November 14th, you will be required to notify employees of their rights under the NLRA, in print and in electronic form on an intranet or internet site " if the employer customarily communicates with its employees about personnel rules or policies by such means."

The NLRB's final rule, which is scheduled to be published in the Federal Register this week, takes effect 75 days after publication.

The content of the notice is based on one already required by the U.S. Labor Department for employers with federal contracts. Notices in printed form will be available from the NLRB or its website in English and other languages. Covered employers must post the notice in all areas in which personnel rules or policies are posted. In workplaces in which 20% of the employees speak English as a second language, the employer must provide the notice in one of those languages in addition to English.

The NLRB estimates that the "great majority" of the nation's 6 million small businesses will be required to post the notices.

The regulation does not require any reporting or recordkeeping by employers. However, an employer that refuses to comply with the rule would violate Section 8(a)(1) of the NLRA. A failure to post the notice prevents an employer from raising a defense that an unfair labor practice charge is untimely as the failure to post the Notice tolls the statute of limitations for an employee filing an unfair labor practice under Section 10(b).

Prior to passage of the final rule, the NLRB received more than 7,000 comments, the majority of which opposed the proposed rule or some aspect of it. The one dissenting member of the Board, Brian Hayes, anticipates a legal challenge, saying the regulation exceeds the NLRB's jurisdiction. Hayes called the Board majority's action not based on substantial evidence and lacking a "reasoned analysis." Nonetheless, until a legal challenge is mounted that might stay the rule, employers must be in compliance by November 14. Copies of the Notice are available from the NLRB beginning November 1. A summary from the NLRB can be found on its web site.

Read the NLRB's summary »

For more information, please contact:

Jahmal Davis

415-995-5815 Direct Phone
415-995-3489 Fax

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