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Opposition to labor’s “ambush election” rule

December 19, 2014

Chamber-of-commerceU.S. Chamber of Commerce

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce expressed strong opposition to the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) re-issuing of its “ambush election” rule, which would impose sweeping changes to the process used to conduct union elections in the workplace.

“It is a shame that the NLRB would expend its resources in this manner, creating more confusion and uncertainty under our nation’s labor laws, rather than focusing on initiatives that would invigorate a still-underperforming economy and encourage job growth,” said Randy Johnson, the Chamber’s senior vice president of Labor, Immigration, and Employee Benefits. “Instead, the NLRB has decided once again to issue a rule that will make it significantly more difficult for employers—especially those at small business—to respond to union campaigns.”

The final “ambush election” rule would unduly accelerate the elections process, limiting the statutory right of employers to explain the costs of unionizing and to bring legal challenges to proposed representation elections. It would also require employers to provide unions with the names, physical and email addresses, and telephone numbers of employees they hope to organize.

“Given that 94 percent of all elections are now conducted within two months and that unions win more than two-thirds of them, there is clearly no rational justification for this regulation,” Johnson continued. “Unfortunately, this new rulemaking is just one part of a set of initiatives pursued by the General Counsel’s office and the NLRB to ease unionization.”

The NLRB’s most recent move is its second attempt to change the union election process. The first, in 2011, was beaten back twice in federal court in a lawsuit initiated by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Litigation Center. The Center is in the process of reviewing the current version of the “ambush rule” to determine its legality.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.

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