Former professor and union–side lawyer Michael Hayes is the new director of the Department of Labor’s Office of Labor Management Standards (OLMS). Hayes comes to the OLMS from the University of Baltimore, where he has served as a professor since 1998. According to the biographical information posted on his faculty webpage, Hayes has taught courses on labor law, collective bargaining, employment law, employment discrimination, torts, negotiation and other lawyering skills. Before teaching, Hayes practiced labor and employment law with a private union-side law firm in Washington, D.C. Earlier in his career, Hayes worked for one year as a staff counsel to the National Labor Relations Board.
As listed on his faculty page, Hayes has written a book: The Campaign Guide: Organizing the Construction Industry, as well as numerous articles on employee and union member rights, including Let Unions Be Unions: Allowing Grants of Benefits During Representation Campaigns, and Has Wright Line Gone Wrong? An Examination of the National Labor Relations Board's Approach to Pretext Cases.
The OLMS will soon be in the spotlight, as the DOL sub-agency is poised to release the controversial “persuader” rule this fall that will threaten attorney-client confidentiality and facilitate union organizing. Specifically, this rule would broaden the scope of reportable activities by substantially narrowing its interpretation of the “advice exemption” in Section 203(c) of the Labor Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA).