A three judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals in D.C. on Tuesday struck down National Labor Relations Board regulations that required workplaces to display a poster about worker’s federal rights.
The NRLB issued new regulations in 2011 that required companies to inform employees about their rights to unionize under federal law. The posting included telling employees 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 refrain from any of these activities.
Judge A. Raymond Randolph, who wrote the decision (PDF), said the First Amendment prohibited the government from compelling businesses to speak. He said the NRLB exceeded its authority by treating failure to post a notice as evidence of unfair labor practices.
Not surprisingly, unions denounced the latest ruling while conservatives championed it.
“The Republican judges of the D.C. Circuit continue to wreak havoc on workers’ rights,” AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said. “After attempting to render the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) inoperable (in the Noel Canning decision), the D.C. Circuit has once again undermined workers’ rights – this time by striking down a common-sense rule requiring employers to inform workers of their rights under federal labor law.”
The National Association of Manufacturers, which initiated the lawsuit against the regulation, declared victory.
“The poster rule is a prime example of a government agency that seeks to fundamentally change the way employers and employees communicate. The ultimate result of the NLRB’s intrusion would be to create hostile work environments where none exist. The U.S. Court of Appeals has rightfully ruled that the NLRB has no authority to enforce notice posting,” President and CEO Jay Timmons said.
Eric W. Dolan has served as an editor for Raw Story since August 2010,
and is based out of Sacramento, California. He grew up in the suburbs
of Chicago and received a Bachelor of Science from Bradley University.
Eric is also the publisher and editor of PsyPost. You can follow him on
Raw Story is a progressive news site that focuses on stories often ignored in the mainstream media. While giving coverage to the big stories of the day, we also bring our readers' attention to policy, politics, legal and human rights stories that get ignored in an infotainment culture driven solely by pageviews.
Founded in 2004, Raw Story reaches 5 million unique readers per month and serves more than 19 million pageviews.