Labor Pains: Because Being in a Union can be Painful

EFCA: What Would Did the Federalists Say?

Today the Federalist Society held a lunch on the kaleidoscopically named Employee Free Choice Act, which could: end secret ballots for employees deciding to join a union; impose government arbitration that would dictate a business’s contract with labor; and impose one-sided penalties on employers for violating the law, while letting union bosses off scot free.

Of particular interest was former National Labor Relations Board member John Raudabaugh (we’ve referenced his work before), who laid into Big Labor’s spurious arguments. We’re trying to track down his written statement to post here later.

UPDATE (3/16/07): The Bureau of National Affairs Daily Labor Report sums up Raudabaugh’s speech:

He asserted that the board as early as 1939 recognized the superiority of secret-ballot elections over the “public signing” of union cards. He also pointed out that under federal law union officers must be elected by secret ballot.

“Unions have been trying to prevent employees from hearing the rest of the story from 1935,” the year the NLRA was enacted, Raudabaugh said. He criticized union card-signing initiatives as “stealth” activities in which peer pressure is applied. The legislation, unlike an NLRB direction of an election, provides no notice to the employer of the organizing campaign and does not require that employees receive information on both the costs and benefits of union representation, Raudabaugh said. The board strives to conduct elections under laboratory conditions, but the bill is “a push for lavatory conditions,” he said.

The bill should be renamed “the global outsourcing initiative,” Raudabaugh said.

Categories: Ending Secret Ballots