The Obama administration is pressing ahead with new union election regulations that will require extra vigilance from employers, according to a leading labor attorney.
David Phippen, a management-side lawyer at Constangy, Brooks, & Smith, said that the National Labor Relations Board, the nation’s top labor arbiter, has created a system where “most of the burdens [fall] on employers.” Those extra burdens are compounded with a compressed timeline: The NLRB mandates that employers respond to petitions for union election with specific objections or unit organizing waivers within eight days and that elections themselves take place in as little as two weeks.
“Unions are doing organizing as a full time venture and using community front groups to do much of the marketing. Unions generally control the timing already,” Phippen says. “The employer will have little time—less time than before, which was already relatively short when compared to other types of elections—to communicate another side of the story to employees if it wants to do so.”
Critics of the law have dubbed it the “ambush election rule” because of the hasty time frame.