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Labor Relations

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  1. Labor Relations Chapter 14 December 8, 2004

  2. Major Labor Laws • Railway Labor Act (RLA) of 1926 • Norris LaGuardia Act (Anti-Injunction Act) • Wagner Act (National Labor Relations Act) of 1935 • Taft-Harley Act (Labor-Management Relations Act) of 1947 • Landrum-Griffin Act (Labor-Management Disclosure Act) of 1959 MQM 323/Fall 2004

  3. Government Regulation of Labor Relations • The Railway Labor Act (RLA) of 1926 • Purpose of the act is to avoid service interruptions resulting from disputes between railroads and their operating unions. • National Mediation Board • National Railway Adjustment Board • The Norris-LaGuardia Act of 1932 • Restricts the ability of employers to obtain an injunction against unions for their lawful activities. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  4. Government Regulation of Labor Relations • The Wagner Act (National Labor Relations Act) of 1935 • Protects employee rights to organize and bargain collectively through representatives of their choice. • Created the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to govern labor relations in the United States. • Holds secret ballot union representation elections. • Prevents and remedies unfair labor practices. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  5. Wagner Act • Section 7 of the Act guarantees these rights: • To self-organization, to form, join, or assist labor organizations, to bargain collectively through freely chosen representatives. • To engage in concerted activities, for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection. • To refrain from any or all of such activities except to the extent that such right may be affected by an agreement requiring membership in a labor organization as a condition of employment. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  6. Unfair Labor Practices (ULPs) • Section 8 of the Wagner Act outlawed employer practices that deny employees their rights and benefits: • Interference with Section 7 rights • Domination of a union (company union) • Discrimination against union members • Arbitrary discharge of union members • Refusal to bargain with the union MQM 323/Fall 2004

  7. Amendments to the Wagner Act • The Taft-Hartley Act (The Labor-Management Relations Act) of 1947 • Balances the rights and duties of labor and management in the collective bargaining arena by defining unfair union practices. • The Landrum-Griffin Act (Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act) of 1959 • Safeguards union member rights and prevents racketeering and other unscrupulous practices by employers and union officers. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  8. Unfair Union Practices • Interfering with representation elections • Influencing employers to discriminate with regard to union membership • Refusal to bargain collectively with employer • Interference with certified employee representative’s relationship with employer • Assessment of excessive initiation fees and dues on bargaining unit members • “Featherbedding” MQM 323/Fall 2004

  9. Labor Relations Process • Workers desire collective representation • Union begins its organizing campaign • Collective negotiations lead to a contract • The contract is administered MQM 323/Fall 2004

  10. The Labor RelationsProcess MQM 323/Fall 2004 Figure 14.1

  11. Why Employees Unionize • As a result of economic needs (wages and benefits) • Dissatisfaction with managerial practices • To fulfill social and status needs. • Unionism is viewed as a way to achieve results they cannot achieve acting individually • To comply with union-shop provisions of the labor agreement in effect where they work MQM 323/Fall 2004

  12. Employer Tactics Opposing Unionization • Stressing favorable employer-employee relationship experienced without a union. • Emphasize current advantages in wages, benefits, or working conditions the employees may enjoy • Emphasize unfavorable aspects of unionism: strikes, union dues, abuses of legal rights • Use statistics to show that unions commit large numbers of unfair labor practices. • Initiate legal action when union members and leaders engage in unfair labor practices MQM 323/Fall 2004

  13. How Employees Become Unionized • Bargaining Unit • A group of two or more employees who share common employment interests and conditions and may reasonably be grouped together for purposes of collective bargaining. • Exclusive Representation • The legal right and responsibility of the union to represent all bargaining unit members equally, regardless of whether employees join the union or not. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  14. The Labor Organization Process Workers Seek Collective Representation Union Begins The Organizing Process Labor Management Representation Election is Held Collective Bargaining For A Contract Contract Administration MQM 323/Fall 2004

  15. Impact of Unionization on Managers • Challenges to Management Prerogatives • Management prerogatives versus union participation in decision-making in the work place. • Loss of Supervisory Authority • Constraints on management in directing and disciplining the work force by terms of the collective bargaining agreement. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  16. Union Structure and Governance • Craft Unions • Industrial Unions • Employee Associations • AFL-CIO • National Unions • Local Unions MQM 323/Fall 2004 Presentation Slide 14–4

  17. Types of Unions • Craft unions • Unions that represent skilled craft workers • Industrial unions • Unions that represent all workers—skilled, semiskilled, unskilled—employed along industry lines • Employee associations • Labor organizations that represent various groups of professional and white-collar employees in labor-management relations. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  18. Typical Organization of a Local Union Local Union Meeting (Normally Monthly) Business Representative President Secretary/Treasurer Sergeant at Arms Vice-Presidents Various Committee Chairpersons Training and Education Grievance Committee:Chief Steward and Shop Stewards Collective Bargaining Social MQM 323/Fall 2004 Local Union Members

  19. Structure and Functions of Local Unions • Local Officers • Elected officials who lead the union and serve on the bargaining committee for a new contract. • Union Steward • An employee, as a nonpaid union official, represents the interests of members in their relations with management. • Business Unionism • The term applied to the goals of U.S. labor organizations, which collectively bargain wages, hours, job security, and working conditions. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  20. Types of Arbitration • Compulsory Binding Arbitration • A process for employees such as police officers, firefighters, and others in jobs where strikes cannot be tolerated to reach agreement. • Final-offer Arbitration • The arbitrator must select one or the other of the final offers submitted by the disputing parties with the award is likely to go to the party whose final bargaining offer has moved the closest toward a reasonable settlement. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  21. The Collective Bargaining Process • PREPARE FOR NEGOTIATIONS------------------------------ • Gather data • Form bargaining terms • DEVELOP STRATEGIES------------------------------ • Develop management proposals and limits of concessions • Consider opponents’ goals • Make strike plans 2 1 • FORMALIZE • AGREEMENT------------------------------ • Clarify contract language • Ratify agreement • CONDUCT NEGOTIATIONS-------------------------------- • Bargain in good faith • Analyze proposals • Resolve proposals • Stay within bargaining zone 4 3 Strikes Legal requirements Lockouts Strike replacements Boycotts Figure 14.2 MQM 323/Fall 2004 Presentation Slide 14–7

  22. The Bargaining Process • Collective Bargaining Process • The process of negotiating a labor agreement, including the use of economic pressures by both parties. • Bargaining Zone • Area within which the union and the employer are willing to concede when bargaining. • Interest-based Bargaining • Problem-solving bargaining based on a win-win philosophy and the development of a positive long-term relationship. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  23. Wages Vacations Holidays Work schedules Management rights Union security Transfers Discipline Grievance procedures No strike/no lockout clause Overtime Safety procedures Severance pay Seniority Pensions and benefits Outsourcing Items In A Labor Agreement MQM 323/Fall 2004

  24. Items In A Labor Agreement (cont’d) • Progressive clauses will cover: • Employee access to records • Limitations on use of performance evaluation • Elder care leave • Flexible medical spending accounts • Protection against hazards of technology equipment (VDTs) • Limitations against electronic monitoring • Procedures governing drug testing • Bilingual stipends • Domestic partnership benefits MQM 323/Fall 2004

  25. Management and Union Power in Collective Bargaining • Bargaining Power • The power of labor and management to achieve their goals through economic, social, or political influence. • Union Bargaining Power • Strikes, pickets, and boycotts • Management Bargaining Power • Hiring replacement workers • Continuing operations staffed by management • Locking out employees MQM 323/Fall 2004

  26. Don’t Buy Here Unfair On Strike Striking Picketing Boycotting Union Power in Collective Bargaining Boycott Our Employer This Union On Strike MQM 323/Fall 2004

  27. Employer Power in Collective Bargaining Management methods for applying economic pressure during bargaining: Outsourcing normal work Locking out workers Hiring replacement workers Demanding concessions MQM 323/Fall 2004

  28. Union Security Agreements • Dues Checkoff • Gives the employer the responsibility of withholding union dues from the paychecks of union members who agree to such a deduction. • “Shop” Agreements • Require employees to join or support the union. • Union shop requires employee membership. • Agency shop allows voluntary membership; employee must pay union dues and fees. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  29. Grievance Arbitration • Rights Arbitration • Arbitration over interpretation of the meaning of contract terms or employee work grievances. • Fair Representation Doctrine • The doctrine under which unions have a legal obligation to provide assistance to both members and nonmembers in labor relations matters. MQM 323/Fall 2004

  30. Current Challenges to Unions Important issues confronting unions Foreign competition and technological change The long-term decrease in union membership Employers’ focus on maintaining nonunion status MQM 323/Fall 2004