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NLRB Postpones Union Poster Rule

Implementation delay to Jan. 31, 2012, will allow time to answer questions from businesses

Due to pressure from lawsuits filed by business organizations, including TRSA, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is postponing the effective date of a new rule requiring most private businesses to display a poster that informs workers about their rights to organize unions. The NLRB announced that it will delay the effective date of the notice-posting requirement from Nov. 14 to Jan. 31, 2012.  The delay is likely to allow for a resolution of those cases prior to this rule taking effect. 

The board said there has been so much confusion about which businesses are covered under the rule that officials want to do more outreach, especially to small and midsize businesses.

The rule requires nearly every private business to post the 11-by-17-inch notice in a prominent location explaining a worker's right to bargain collectively, distribute union literature and engage in other union-related activities without reprisal.

“The posters are a government effort to encourage workers to unionize,” said Kevin Schwalb, TRSA’s director of government relations. “With all of the union outreach efforts, it should not be incumbent on the employer to go through the costs of hanging a poster to do a union’s job.”

Failure to display the posters under the new rule would be considered an unfair labor practice. But a spokesperson for the NLRB said the board is not trying to implement a "gotcha" rule and would probably issue a warning first if there were a complaint about a company's failure to comply.