Evidence continues to mount as to how much more quickly representation elections are being held since the National Labor Relations Board’s (“NLRB” or “Board”) Amended Representation Election Rules that took effect on April 14, 2015. The Wall Street Journal has crunched the data and reports today that the median number of days between the filing of a representation petition and the day on which employees vote has fallen to 23 days in uncontested elections where the employer and union stipulated to the terms for the vote, and 25 days in the 20 contested cases in which the election was directed by the Board after a hearing. In comparison, during the Board’s 2014 fiscal year, the last full year before the new rules took effect, the median time was 38 days for all elections and 59 days in contested elections.
While challenges were filed to the Amended Election Rules by business groups, the two District Courts that have considered arguments that the NLRB exceeded its authority when it adopted the new Rules last December in each case the challenge was dismissed. Both cases are being appealed.
Meanwhile, employers and unions alike continue to await the Board’s decisions in two other cases likely to have major impacts on organizing and representation case law. In Browning-Ferris, the Board is considering whether to adopt standard for determining joint-employer status that would make it much easier for unions to claim that separate businesses are joint employers. In Miller & Anderson the Board will decide whether it will continue to follow its decision in Oakwood Care Center (pdf), which disallowed inclusion of solely employed employees and jointly employed employees in the same unit absent consent of both employers, and if not, whether the Board should return to the holding of M.B. Sturgis, Inc. (pdf), which permits the inclusion of both solely and jointly employed employees in the same unit without the consent of the employers.