National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors Ongoing Labor Efforts

Jade West, NAW senior vice president-government relations has reported on two new developments in their ongoing labor efforts:

First, NAW has joined allied trade groups in filing an amicus brief in another case challenging the NLRB’s application of the Specialty Healthcare micro-bargaining unit standard in a union organizing effort. In this case, the Board found that the union’s proposed collective bargaining unit of technical workers in one department of Huntington-Ingall’s Newport News shipyard was an appropriate unit, rejecting the company’s argument that other technical employees were appropriate to include in the bargaining unit. Like Specialty Healthcare, Huntington chose to take action necessary to get this issue into court, and refused to bargain with the union. Although the Board originally suggested that the Specialty standard would not be widely-applied, they are now applying that micro-unit standard to a wide variety of industries, so Huntington is likely to be followed by other court challenges to NLRB actions in this area.

Second, NAW and the coalition we help manage, the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace (CDW), have also been involved in challenges to the President’s controversial “recess” appointments to the NLRB. Two cases have been making their way through the court system: Noel Canning and Center for Social Change. CDW is an intervener in the Noel Canning case. The D.C. Court of Appeals agreed to NAW’s request that the cases be consolidated (over the objections of the NLRB), and has scheduled oral argument on both cases on December 5th, an earlier date than if the Noel Canning case was to proceed separately. NAW attorneys are also pleased with the panel of judges assigned to the case. With this expedited schedule, there could be a decision on the constitutionality of the recess appointments as soon as January.


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