The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) issued the following statement in response to a Senate Appropriations Committee vote on an amendment that would prevent the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) from recognizing micro-unions. The amendment, sponsored by Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) failed to pass the Committee by a vote of 15 to 15.
“While the outcome of today’s vote is disappointing, we will continue to pursue all avenues to block the NLRB’s job-killing micro-union decision. Micro-unions will cause division within the retail workforce leading to conflicts and complexities that will undermine retailers’ ability to grow and create jobs,” said Katherine Lugar, executive vice president for public affairs. "The NLRB’s micro-union decision benefits Big Labor at the expense of individual employees and employers. Micro-unions undermine the flexibility and the cross-training that retail employees seek and the agility that retailers rely upon to meet the expectations of customers."
Micro-unions were created as a result of the NLRB’s August 2011 Specialty Healthcare decision. The decision redefines what the NLRB views as a proper bargaining unit, allowing union organizers to gerrymander a workplace by cherry-picking small groups of employees within a larger workforce to form a micro-union.
The NLRB and its Regional Directors have already begun clearing the way for micro-unions including a unit made up of the women’s shoe department at a New York Bergdorf Goodman store, as well as maintenance employees at a Nestle-Dryer Ice Cream plant, and behind-the-counter employees at a DTG car rental location.
RILA is the trade association of the world’s largest and most innovative retail companies. RILA members include more than 200 retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers, which together account for more than $1.5 trillion in annual sales, millions of American jobs and more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.