Alternative Policy Concerning Unions
Author: Mark Goodwin, LeClairRyan
When to Use
The National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) protects the rights of employees to organize, form, join and assist labor organizations. It also protects the rights of employers to express views, argument or opinion concerning unions, if such expression contains no threat of reprisal or force or promise of benefit. This protected communication includes a non-union employer's expression of its view that it wants to stay non-union. A written and published policy is best practice for communicating this view. It is also helpful for the employer to have a written and published policy for defending against potential unfair labor practice charges alleging that the employer's communications on the subject contained threats or promises.
The policy should be communicated to employees at the commencement of employment and may be made part of an employee handbook that employees sign and acknowledge that they have received.
The policy below is meant for use at companies that are largely non-union operations, but where there may be pockets of unionized operations. It is meant to convey the reasons for staying non-union in its currently non-union operations while not striking discord among the employees who have chosen unionized operations and management.