E-Blasts

On May 30, 2018, the California Fifth District Court of Appeal vacated an Agricultural Labor Relations Board’s (the “ALRB” or “Board”) prior Order to set aside an election to decertify the United Farm Workers (“UFW”) as the bargaining representative for Gerawan Farming, Inc.’s (“Gerawan”) agricultural employees.

On May 14, 2018, the Agricultural Labor Relations Board (“ALRB” or the “Board”) issued a decision and order affirming an Administrative Law Judge’s (“ALJ”) finding that the United Farm Workers (“UFW”) engaged in threats and coercive activities, violating employees’ rights guaranteed by the Agricultural Labor Relations Act (“ALRA”).

In 2014, the National Labor Relations Board’s (“NLRB”) Office of the General Counsel issued 13 complaints involving 78 charges against McDonald’s USA, LLC and multiple McDonald’s franchisees all over the country. The complaints alleged a variety of unfair labor practices by the franchisees and McDonald’s USA as a joint employer, including taking unlawful actions against employees for “participating in nationwide fast food worker protests about their terms and conditions of employment,” namely the Fight for $15 campaign. The parties have been engaged in an ongoing trial since 2015.

On Monday afternoon, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB" or "Board”) announced that it is vacating its recent Hy-Brand decision addressing joint employer liability in light of a report that questioned the appropriateness of one of the Board Members' involvement. 

Last week, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) published an advice memorandum written last year by the Office of the General Counsel (“OGC”) concluding that EZ Industrial Solutions, LLC (“EZ”) violated the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) by terminating 18 employees after they participated in the “Day Without Immigrants” protest in February of 2017.

The National Labor Relations Board’s General Counsel (“Board GC”) released a number of advice memorandums this week on various “gray areas” of federal labor law. Advice memos are used by the Board’s GC to guide local offices on National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) policy and may serve to instruct the offices on a certain strategy or course of action in a particular case. 

One of the memos released this week addressed whether employees can be discharged for making figurative threats of violence during a pre-shift meeting addressing workplace safety issues. In re: Williams-Sonoma Direct, Inc., the Company instituted a new workplace safety policy that allowed employees to walk into areas where forklifts were being operated as long as proper safety measures were taken. Two forklift drivers (“Charging Parties”), who had been staunch union supporters in a failed union organizing drive, objected to the new policy, stating that it would be dangerous because it is difficult to see when moving pallets around. Charging Parties asked if a “mirror miss,” an offense that occurs when an employee operating machinery gets too close to another worker, would be treated the same as hitting somebody under the new policy. When Charging Parties did not get a clear response, one of the Charging Parties stated that he might as well hit another employee if a mirror miss was going to count the same as a collision. The other Charging Party stated that in the event that he hit somebody he would hit them twice because a “dead man cannot talk.” The other employees at the meeting laughed at these comments.

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