Collective Bargaining is a term that all employees need to know. It is part of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and if employees knew how the process actually worked, not many would risk their wages and benefits on what is most often called “…a roll of the dice.” There are many facets of the NLRA and collective bargaining and below is just a short summary. In a previous post we listed some of the things that employees do not realize that the union negotiates for and the only thing that the union has to negotiate WITH is the employee’s wages and benefits.
We highly recommend that all employees go to the NLRB.GOV website and download a copy of the Basic Guide to the NLRA. In addition we will briefly review the concept of bargaining in the NLRA, utilizing the Basic Guide, straight from the NLRB government website. It is imperative to state that no where in the ACT does it say the union and the company have to agree to anything, they just have to talk and in good faith. In contrast, there are 3 places in the ACT that specifically state the union and company DOES NOT REQUIRE EITHER PARTY TO AGREE OR MAKE A CONCESSION
- Collective bargaining is defined in the act. Section 8(d) requires an employer and the representative of its employees to meet at reasonable times, to confer in good faith about certain matters, and to put into writing any agreement reached if requested by either party. The parties must confer in good faith with respect to wages, hours, and other terms or conditions of employment, the negotiation of an agreement, or any question arising under an agreement. These obligations are imposed equally on the employer and the representative of its employees. It is an unfair labor practice for either party to refuse to bargain collectively with the other. The obligation does not, however, compel either party to agree to a proposal by the other, nor does it require either party to make a concession to the other .
- The duty to bargain covers all matters concerning rates of pay, wages, hours of employment, or other conditions of employment. These are called “mandatory” subjects of bargaining about which the employer, as well as the employees’ representative, must bargain in good faith, although the law does not require “either party to agree to a proposal or require the making of a concession.”
- Section 8(b)(3) The obligation does not require the labor organization or the employer to agree to a proposal by the other party or make a concession to the other party, but it does require bargaining with an open mind in an attempt to reach agreement.