Fred Wszolek

Just a few short weeks ago, the Washington metropolitan area was preparing for Hurricane Irene and the strong winds and rainfall accompanying the storm. Most parents and homeowners were running around town picking up batteries, buying flashlights and purchasing water in the event there were significant disruptions in power. Yet, in a little known agency stocked with unelected bureaucrats carrying out an agenda dictated by Big Labor bosses and faithfully executed by President Obama’s Administration, members of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) worked feverishly over the weekend to complete new regulations on workers and small businesses that will increase unemployment and economic distress.

The agency, supposedly “independent” and founded to help administer to relations between employers and unions in the private sector has become an advocacy arm of union bosses. Unable to enact their radical, job-killing agenda in Congress, Big Labor has co-opted a regulatory agency within the executive branch to do its bidding. The results speak for themselves as this past week, the NLRB issued a number of decisions which will make it harder for existing businesses to keep the lights on, and certainly make future employers think twice before they invest time and energy into an enterprise the government is more interested in exploiting than growing.

Among the NLRB’s decisions, Specialty Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center of Mobile radically alters how collective bargaining units are defined in every industry despite the dishonest claim made by Obama’s labor board in its press release that they “did not create new criteria for determining appropriate bargaining units outside of health care facilities.” The new standard mandates that the only requirement to form a unit is a “community of interest” meaning the tight ends on a football team could constitute a unit, while the offensive linemen or wide receivers would constitute separate units. The NLRB makes it nearly impossible for employers to expand the pool of individuals in the so-called “community of interest” as the employees outside the unit would need to meet an arbitrary threshold classified as an “overwhelming community of interest.” The practical effect of this is that under one employer’s roof, multiple mini-units could be formed resulting in dramatically increased labor relations costs due to the proprietor having to bargain with multiple units negotiating against one another. As one reads this, an obvious question comes to mind, how does this create one job? It does not and demonstrates the Obama Administration is in the business of promoting unions over worker concerns, instead of working to reduce unemployment and turn the economy around.

Fred Wszolek

Fred Wszolek is a spokesman for the Workforce Fairness Institute (WFI).