Posts tagged Lauren McFerran
Commentary: New Biden ‘Joint Employer’ regulation is a boon for unions
November 13, 2023 // In short, joint employment is a possible means for unions to organize major corporations all at once, rather than the piecemeal process of organizing workers at one location at a time. Incidentally, two of the board’s three Democrat majority members are David Prouty, former general counsel of the service employee union UNITE HERE, and Gwynne Wilcox, a former lawyer for the Service Employees International Union. Chairwoman Lauren McFerran served as a staffer of former Sen. Tom Harkin, a longtime union ally.
Franchisors may be more liable for employees under broadened joint employer rule
October 26, 2023 // The National Labor Relations Board just issued a final labor rule that broadens the joint employer rule to make companies jointly liable with their franchisees for labor terms and conditions such as union contracts, pay, scheduling, and more, reviving an Obama-era rule that was limited in scope during the Trump Administration. Moving forward, franchisors will likely need to become more involved in creating and enforcing workplace policies, something that previously was left mainly up to franchisees. According to the National Labor Relations Board, this is a legal course correction back to the way the joint employer rule originally worked. Related: Appeal of McDonald's joint employer settlement denied by Labor board “The Board’s new joint-employer standard reflects both a legally correct return to common-law principles and a practical approach to ensuring that the entities effectively exercising control over workers’ critical terms of employment respect their bargaining obligations under the NLRA,” NLRB chairman Lauren McFerran said in a statement. “While the final rule establishes a uniform joint-employer standard, the board will still conduct a fact-specific analysis on a case-by-case basis to determine whether two or more employers meet the standard.” Trade organizations and business groups have pushed back against the ruling, with the National Restaurant Association and Restaurant Law Center, stating that it will “create chaos and legal questions” across the industry, as restaurants with franchisees try to figure out how to change their operational policies to fit the new rule. Related: NLRB to rule on joint employer status by summer “Today’s final rule on joint employer is a heavy blow to small business restaurant operators,” Sean Kennedy, executive vice president for Public Affairs at the National Restaurant Association said in a statement, adding that almost one-third of the restaurant industry would be affected by this rule. “The rule upends employment policy, adopting a far-fetched definition of ‘employer’ based on ‘indirect or potential influence’ of an employee and then fails to define how ‘indirect control’ will count toward a joint employer relationship.” The previous rule, which was finalized by the Department of Labor under the Trump administration in Jan. 2020, adopted a four-part test for assessing whether a company is a joint employer of another company’s workers, like the franchisor-franchisee relationship. Previously, companies were given joint employer status if they exercised “direct and immediate control” over the key terms of another organization's employees, like a franchisee. Now, that definition has been expanded to companies jointly classified as "sharing or co-determining” employment terms (like pay, scheduling, workplace rules, etc.).
An invitation for union organizers to cheat in elections
September 1, 2023 // The board’s stated interest here is in speedier resolutions of representation cases. “Today’s decision, along with the Board’s recently issued Final Rule on Representation, will strengthen the Board’s ability to provide workers across the country with a timely and fair process for seeking union representation,” said NLRB Chairman Lauren McFerran. Boardmember Marvin Kaplan, the NLRB’s lone Republican appointee, argued in his dissent that the ruling ignores the Supreme Court ruling in a 1946 case called A. J. Tower. “Accordingly, my colleagues ignore the inconvenient fact that the Supreme Court found… that resolving issues of employee eligibility to vote before the election not only satisfies that goal but is ‘peculiarly appropriate’ in Board elections,” Kaplan said.
NLRB restores Obama-era rule speeding up union election process
August 25, 2023 // The U.S. National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) on Thursday finalized procedural changes that will speed up the union election process, which have been criticized by business groups for favoring organized labor. The Democrat-led board's rule restores changes to the election process that were adopted during the Obama administration and largely eliminated in 2019 when appointees of Republican former President Donald Trump led the board. Among the key provisions of the new rule are a requirement that elections be held before related litigation is resolved. Under the Trump-era regulation, the board had to rule on issues such as workers' eligibility to vote and alleged unlawful conduct by employers before holding an election.
US labor board says work rules cannot hamper unionizing
August 4, 2023 // Wednesday's ruling stems from a union's challenge to Stericycle Inc's policies barring worker conduct that could harm the company's reputation or create conflicts of interest. The labor board did not rule on the merits of the case but sent it back to an administrative judge to apply the new standard. The board's Democratic majority said employers can rebut the presumption that a rule is unlawful by proving to the NLRB that it "advances a legitimate and substantial interest" that cannot be addressed with a narrower policy. NLRB Member Marvin Kaplan, a Trump appointee, in a dissenting opinion said that standard will be virtually impossible for many employers to meet. He added that his colleagues had failed to balance workers' labor rights with businesses' ability to adopt reasonable rules.
NLRB puts union bull’s-eye on the franchise industry
January 2, 2023 // The National Labor Relations Board has proposed a dramatic overhaul of the franchise business model by reclassifying workers at restaurant or hotel chains as employees of the parent company, a move that would make it easier to unionize across the entire brand. Opponents warn that the change will devastate an industry employing 8.2 million people and contributing roughly 7% to the nation’s overall economic output. “This is going to hurt a lot of people, from someone coming out of the corporate environment looking to be an independent business owner to someone looking to start their career with an entry-level job to consumers who will have to pay $15 for a hamburger,” said Frank Caperino, who teaches franchise management at San Diego State University and owns multiple franchises.
Op-Ed: Big Labor fights dirty over control of Southeast port jobs
May 20, 2022 // Daggett and Co. are counting on pro-forced unionism bureaucrat Lauren McFerran, whom President Joe Biden elevated to the NLRB chairmanship last year, and two other NLRB members selected by Biden last year to sit on this case while they continue to break the law. If top ILA union bosses turn out to be right about the NLRB, then the hybrid work model that has greatly enhanced the competitiveness of the major North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia ports will be in grave jeopardy.