SHRM to NLRB: Proposed Change to Union Election Procedures Would Infringe on Employee Rights and Burden Employers

Apr 10, 2014

WASHINGTON — In a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) hearing today, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) expressed strong opposition to the agency’s proposed rule to change union election procedures.

Speaking on behalf of the more than 275,000-member SHRM, Roger King, a lawyer at Jones Day law firm and SHRM member said, “The board’s proposed new election rules, if adopted, will have a substantial adverse impact on two of the board’s major stakeholders—employees and employers.”

The hearing allowed public comment on the NLRB’s proposed rule that would shorten the time between when a representation petition is filed with the NLRB and when a union election is held from an average of 38 days to as few as 10 days. The procedural changes originally were proposed by the NLRB in 2011 and then invalidated by a federal court.

On April 7, SHRM submitted comments to the NLRB in response to these proposed changes. As in 2011, the association’s response to the proposal included heavy member participation. More than 4,600 SHRM members registered their concerns with the NLRB, and 96 SHRM state councils and chapters signed SHRM’s comment letter, which was filed in conjunction with the HR Policy Association.

In his testimony, King further explained that the board did not provide an adequate justification for changing the current election rules noting that a “shortened timeframe would provide little or no opportunity for employees to obtain objective information regarding the impact of unionization in the workplace.”

As another main point, he added, “The new election rules related to voter lists infringe on employee privacy rights, fail to provide adequate safeguards for the protection of private employee information, and are overly burdensome for employers.”

A live recording of the hearing can be viewed on the NLRB’s website:

MEDIA: For more information or to schedule an interview, contact at 703-535-6072 or Kate Kennedy at and 703-535-6260.

About the Society for Human Resource Management

Founded in 1948, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest HR membership organization devoted to human resource management. Representing more than 275,000 members in over 160 countries, the Society is the leading provider of resources to serve the needs of HR professionals and advance the professional practice of human resource management. SHRM has more than 575 affiliated chapters within the United States and subsidiary offices in China, India and United Arab Emirates. Visit us at and follow us on Twitter @SHRMPress.


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