SW Legal Educational Publishing

Don't Tell Us If You Are a Union Organizer
Description Employer's policy of refusing to consider employment applications on which applicants wrote "volunteer union organizer" upheld as not in violation of NLRA since information was written in violation of application instructions and was not effort to communicate to other workers.
Topic Labor Law
Key Words Self-Organization, Protected Activity, Unionization
C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts Employer refused to hire numerous applicants who wrote "volunteer union organizer" on their employment applications. The applications clearly stated: "Provide only the information requested. Failure to do so will result in disqualification of your application." Company rules stated that any application containing nonresponsive information would be disqualified. Union petitioned NLRB that this policy violated NLRA right to self-organization. NLRB held that a worker's act of writing "volunteer union organizer" on his application is a protected right under the NLRB, similar to wearing union insignia, as a part of the right to self-organization. Employer appealed.
Decision Reversed. Employer's policy did not conflict with NLRA right to self-organization. The statement written on the application was only to communicate union affiliation to employer, not to other employees. Employer rejected all applications that did not follow the instructions on the application. Applicants were free to reapply and properly fill out application form.
Citation Incl. Brotherhood of Boilermakers v. H.B. Zachry Co., ---F.3d--- (1997 WL 680031, 11th Cir.)
127 F.3d 1300 (11th Cir., 1997)

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