The Unionization Process: West Virginia
Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.
Author: Eric E. Kinder, Spilman Thomas & Battle, PLLC
- West Virginia has an explicit public policy of encouraging collective bargaining. To this end, the Legislature enacted the Labor-Management Relations Act which is patterned after the National Labor Relations Act. See Labor-Management Relations Act for the Private Sector.
- The Labor-Management Relations Act outlines the processes for representation, elections, and unfair labor practice charges. See Representatives and Elections; Unfair Labor Practices under the Labor-Management Relations Act.
- Constitutional protections give public employees limited rights to organize and engage in concerted activities, but West Virginia does not have any legislation authorizing such actions. Employers are under no obligation to bargain collectively with organized public employees. See Public Sector Labor Relations.
- West Virginia is not a "right to work" state. See Right to Work.