On Aug. 22, the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) joined the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace (CDW), which represents 275 trade associations and businesses, in submitting comments to the National Labor Relations Board regarding a proposed rulemaking governing union elections.
At issue is a proposed regulation from the NLRB that would establish new procedures for “conducting a secret ballot election to determine if employees wish to be represented for purposes of collective bargaining.”
According to most interpretations, new procedures could result in union representation elections held within 10 to 21 days of a union petition. In 2010, the average time to election for union representation was 31 days, with a target median of 45 days. There is a very real concern, according to the CDW, that so-called “snap” elections can prevent employees from making an informed decision about union representation by limiting information about the union trying to organize them and unions generally.
The CDW comments stated, in part, “shortening of the timetable for holding elections improperly denies employees the time and information necessary to make a fair and informed decision regarding union representation, especially in conjunction with the deferral of important unit determinations until after the election.”
Similarly, AAIA points out, the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) sought to replace the private ballot with a significantly easier (biased against the employer) process called “card check.” Most businesses and business associations, including AAIA, pushed back hard against the efforts to legislate “card check” and it failed to pass in the 111th Congress. It is widely believed that as a result of this failure, the NLRB decided to take this regulatory initiative, according to AAIA.