Clear Space In The Kitchen: NLRB Proposes Rule Requiring Notice Of Employee Rights Under The NLRA
The National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or “the Board”) has published a proposed rule that would require all employers to post a notice informing employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”). The proposed rule would apply only to private-sector employers subject to the NLRA, which excludes agricultural, railroad and airline employers. The notice would be similar in content and design to the notice of NLRA rights that must be posted by federal contractors under a recent Department of Labor rule.
The language of the proposed employee notice is available here. According to the Board, the purpose of the proposed rule is “to increase knowledge of the NLRA among employees, to better enable the exercise of rights under the statute, and to promote statutory compliance by employers and unions.” Instead of quoting the NLRA itself, however, the posting provides detailed illustrations of employee rights derived from various court and Board decisions. The notice also includes examples of conduct that may violate the NLRA.
The proposed rule requires that the notice be posted physically “in conspicuous places, including all places where notices to employees are customarily placed.” Electronic distribution, such as by email, posting on an intranet or an internet site, would also be required if an employer customarily communicates with its employees that way. The notice would be available at no charge at NLRB regional offices or could be downloaded from the Board’s website.
Failure to post the required notice may result in significant sanctions for employers. Failure to post the notice may be considered an unfair labor practice charge, evidence of unlawful motive in unfair labor practice cases, or may toll the six-month statute of limitations period for filing unfair labor practice charges.
Although the public comments period for the proposed rule is now closed, we will continue to monitor and post updates on the ongoing rulemaking process.
If you would like to discuss the potential impact of the NLRB’s proposed rule on your business, please contact the Foster Pepper Employment and Labor Relations Practice Group.