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Your EFCA coverage is excellent
C. Wolf

Love your EFCA articles.

Although I do not own a company any more, and never did have more than four employees, I never had a good interaction with a union. I appreciate this site because it's good to know that business owners can get help in dealing with unions. I believe that in spite of some good results from union efforts in our nation's history, the bottom lien score for unions overall are about a minus-5 on a scale of minus 10 to plus 10. If I had a large company here in Florida, I'd be watching out for unions very much, because our Governor is on the make for a presidential bid, and he's a RINO. Even though our state is RTW, that can change. It is good to have a resource like the Labor Relations Institute for companies that need help, especially when our so-called President has never seen a law he won't break for his own advantage.
R. Canary

A Peek Into Inland Empire Corporate Campaign Tactics

Since 2009, a Change to Win campaign, Warehouse Workers United, has been running attacks on employers in California’s “Inland Empire.” WWU is a joint venture of SEIU, UFCW, and the Teamsters. This week, Labor Notes gives us a glimpse into how corporate campaigns are built and, more importantly, why certain employers and not others are in the crosshairs.

In what is certainly no coincidence, the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement has been investigating cases of wage theft by employers who just happen to employ WWU activists. The campaign has also solicited workers into class-action lawsuits against those same employers to collect “stolen” wages. (Suits are based on the charge that workers paid by the piece were forced to wait

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Welcome to Union-Lite

For the past year the UFCW has been secretively signing up Walmart employees to something new — Organization United for Respect at Walmart, or OUR Walmart for short. It isn’t a union, per se, as it isn’t about getting formal recognition or a union contract…just yet. According to its website, OUR Walmart is only about one thing – you guessed it, “respect” – and without all those nasty negative connotations we share for the “U” word (dues, corruption, Mob ties, socialism, rigged elections, strikes, protecting bad employees, fat cat union bosses, being stuck forever with a do-nothing union, etc.) And those who sign up now get respect at a discount as they are asked to pay only $5 a month to OUR Walmart, a fraction of the average

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Forget Walmart

The 23,000-member United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1500 has filed for a union election at a Target store in Valley Stream, L.I., the first filing in what is expected to be an aggressive, extended organizing campaign for 27 Target stores in the New York city area. For nearly a decade the UFCW has attempted to leverage Walmart into neutrality, using its political muscle to block the retail giant from building stores in NYC market. Meanwhile, the union ignored Target as it established itself in and around the city.

Bernie Hesse, political director of UFCW Local 1189 in Minnesota, Target’s home state, explains the tactical shift this way — “We have to organize Target stores, or we’ll soon be irrelevant.” You said it, Bernie.


Union Free YouTube Video: What's Really Behind the War on Walmart?

What’s really behind the war on Walmart? As cheap Walmart groceries drive unionized chains out of business the UFCW must keep Walmart out of major cities to stay alive. [flashvideo file=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0lMfoA5ZozE /]

Be sure to visit the LRI Union Free YouTube Channel to view this and other entertaining and informative videos.

Solidarity vs. Low Low Prices

A Quinnipiac Poll released last week shows 63% of union households in NYC would shop at Walmart if they could. Currently, union members (and everyone else) can’t shop at a Walmart in NYC because their union bosses won’t have it — and they’ve been putting the screws to city officials to keep NYC Walmart free.

Not only do union members not seem to agree with their union bosses about Walmart, but there seems to be a certain lack of solidarity on the Walmart issue between labor lords who stand to get something from new Walmart stores (the Building Trades) and those who make their living demonizing Walmart. (the UFCW and SEIU). Mums the word on both sides when it comes to the concerns of the other

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Canadian Walmart Workers Hope to Show Union the Door

Employees at the Wal-Mart outlet in Saint-Hyacinthe, Que., the first store to successfully sign a collective agreement and stay open in Canada, have filed a request to decertify the union. UFCW Local 501 is “suspicious” of the 147 (out of 205) signatures collected on the decertification petition. Gregor Murray, a professor of industrial relations at the Université de Montreal, called it “a predictable event in the ongoing saga. Murray sees three plausible scenarios for why 70% of the unionized employees want out of the union. One, their contract, imposed by an arbitrator, is weak and favorable to Walmart. Two, they may be simply “disappointed” with their union and three, Walmart may have screened new hires for union sympathies.

Union Proponents = Failed At Math

I’ll admit that we are all guilty of filtering facts to fit our worldview. If we are going to be honest with ourselves and others, and create authentic arguments that go beyond emotional appeal alone, we have to consider the basic underlying facts of an issue.

Here is a good example of someone completely avoiding the hard math behind an issue. When the employees of a Canadian Wal-Mart tire & lube department won union representation, they sought increases in labor costs that would put the department into the red (meaning the shop would lose money), and there was no room to raise prices to compensate due to competition in the marketplace.

It is unfortunate that our government-owned school system fails to prepare our citizens in the basics of math. Oh well, as long as unions control the school system, who has a right to expect this to ever

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Arbitration: A Cautionary Tale

While much has been written about EFCA’s secret ballot provision, less ink has been spilled about the interest arbitration provisions. Arguably, this could be what really dooms businesses — the idea that government arbitrators with no experience whatsoever in your business are now going to decide your wages, health care costs, etc. should be unsettling to any business, large or small. The reality, however, is that this is exactly what EFCA would demand.

So, the recent news from Canada should offer a cautionary tale. Wal-Mart was involved in a long labor dispute with UFCW over representation of a handful of employees that worked specifically in a Wal-Mart tire and lube shop. Wal-Mart lost the case and the Court decided to impose a 33 percent wage increase for the workers. The end result: the workers have now lost their jobs.

Some might blame Wal-Mart, but they are not the villain

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Employee Free Choice: Why We All Owe A Debt to Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart gets a lot of bad publicity. That’s what happens when you are the big dog. But you learn to take those shots with a large grain of salt. Especially if you are in the labor relations part of the business, where just about anything you do is likely to make the front pages of hundreds of union and other anti-corporate blogs – if not the occasional Wall Street Journal article.

Recently Wal-Mart was ambushed with complaints that its labor relations training on the Employee Free Choice Act violated the federal election laws. The main thrust of the allegation was that Wal-Mart was telling its hourly supervisors to vote against Barack Obama and other Democrats in the November elections. Unions filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission two weeks later.

There are a couple of major problems with the story, none of which – shockingly – ever

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Employee Free Choice Act Foot Soldiers

Big Labor is gearing up their push to make the EFCA the law of the land. They are beginning the campaign of talking to their constituency by “grass roots” efforts and direct mail. There are a few organizations, such as the national Chamber of Commerce and a few pro-business groups attempting to put up a fight. However, Big Labor definitely has the lion’s share of cash and foot soldiers on their side.

“The AFL-CIO announced Tuesday that it was starting “a ramped-up campaign” to make Mr. Obama’s campaign pledge a political reality, beginning this week with a massive mailing to more than 600,000 swing union households in the battleground states of Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

“That will be followed by a ‘massive campaign’ among 13 million union voters in August to promote Mr. Obama and specifically highlight his support for the labor law reform bill known as “card

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