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EMPLOYERS MUST INFORM THEIR STAFF OF THEIR WORK PLACE RIGHTS

October 16, 2012 | Category: Corporate and Taxation

As a follow-up to my recent email regarding the National Labor Relations Board’s actions regarding social media policies and Facebook firings, the Board recently announced that it has finalized a rule requiring most private employers to post notices in their work place informing workers of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (“Act”).  The posting must be in the form of an 11 x 17inch sign, similar to the Department of Labor Notices already posted in employer’s work places and posted in the same place as such other work place notices.

This rule was originally scheduled to become effective on November 14, 2011, but the Board delayed the effective date to January 31, 2012, to provide more time for small and medium-sized employers to comply.

Similar to those matters addressed in my prior email, the new notice requirements are intended to inform employees of their rights to, among other things, discuss wages and benefits and other terms and conditions of their employment or union organizing with their co-workers or a union.  The foregoing constitutes “concerted activities” that are protected under the Act.  It is generally believed that such protected concerted activity only involves the unionization of large groups.  However, such activity generally need only involve two or more employees and, as such, applies to virtually any employer.

As addressed in the notice, protected concerted activity consists of much more than union organization.  It is also protected concerted activity for two or more employees to discuss their wages, hours and benefits, overtime, treatment by supervisors, issues with other employees and other terms and conditions of their employment.

The notice also confirms that it is illegal for an employer to take adverse action against an employee who engages in such protected concerted activity.

To download the poster, go to: www.nlrb.gov/sites/default/files/documents/1562/employee_rights_nlra.pdf

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