Associate Deputy Labor Secretary, Michael Avakian, resigned from his position in early April due to a possible ethics violation. Avakian had been suspended without pay earlier when he continued legal work against the Ironworker’s union after joining the agency. Department officials explained that Avakian didn’t realize he was in violation of rules, and misinterpreted an admonition to “wrap-up” the case when he joined the Department.
As the NLRB bleeds field staff, there is a discrepancy in changes to workload between agency leadership and the NLRB union. While the field staff has dropped 17% since the start of the Trump administration - mostly due to attrition and field office consolidation - the agency claimed that unfair labor practice filings were down 7-10%. However, the NLRB union claims filings are actually up 2%.
The NLRB overturned a Clinton-era rule regarding a successor employer’s right to set the initial terms of employment, narrowing the circumstances when a Burns successor will not be able to set its own terms and conditions of employment. This is a bit complex to embody in a summary, so if you need the details, read them here and here.
In a recent decision, in which a series of unfair labor practice charges against the company were upheld, the remedy involved holding a second election (due to the passage of time and workforce turnover), which included equal time to be provided to the union for meeting with employees.
A recent ruling by an administrative law judge is a reminder that, though arbitration agreements have been declared legal, the clauses within them can be problematic. In this case, a confidentiality clause was deemed to chill Section 7 employee rights, in violation of Section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act.
The NLRB finally release a proposed joint employer rule at the beginning of the month. You can review the rule and examples here, and to make comment use this link, and look for rulemaking docket RIN 1235-AA26.