My op-ed in today’s YDN on the need for a neutrality agreement at Yale – New Haven Hospital is on-line here:
There are some anti-union tactics that remain technically illegal, like firing employees for speaking positively about the union to their co-workers, or having managers forcibly tear union stickers off of employees’ clothing. But when anti-union administrators here at Yale-New Haven Hospital have trotted out these and other tried-and-true union-busting tactics, hospital workers have found little recourse in the NLRB. That’s partly because of the difficulty of proving guilt to the NLRB; smart anti-union managers always have an alibi for why someone needed to be let go (lateness is a popular one). It’s also because, if the NLRB should decide to pursue your case, it becomes empowered to agree to a settlement on your behalf.
Typical settlement for a case of wrongly firing an outspoken union supporter? Reinstatement of the employee, sometimes with back pay, and usually long after the fate of the union drive has been decided. Not to mention temporarily having to post some signs that are the legalese equivalent of scrawling “I will not union-bust again” on the chalkboard. In other words, union-busting pays. That’s why YNHH keeps doing it.