Get access to the exclusive HR Resources you need to succeed in 2018.
Sign up for free email newsletters and get more SHRM content delivered to your inbox.
Is your employee handbook keeping up with the changing world of work? With SHRM's Employee Handbook Builder get peace of mind that your handbook is up-to-date.
Build competencies, establish credibility and advance your career—while earning PDCs—at SHRM Seminars in 14 cities across the U.S. this fall.
Gain the skills you need to rise to the next level in your career. Jon us at SHRM's Leadership Development Forum, October 2-3 in Boston.
Members may download one copy of our sample forms and templates for your personal use within your organization. Please note that all such forms and policies should be reviewed by your legal counsel for compliance with applicable law, and should be modified to suit your organization’s culture, industry, and practices. Neither members nor non-members may reproduce such samples in any other way (e.g., to republish in a book or use for a commercial purpose) without SHRM’s permission. To request permission for specific items, click on the “reuse permissions” button on the page where you find the item.
From Supervisor's Guide to Labor Relations (SHRM, 2003)
An Overview of Labor Law
Three major laws establish the groundwork for labor relations in the United States. The following is a brief description of those laws and of the NLRB, which administers and enforces labor laws.
The Wagner Act of 1935 (National Labor Relations Act)The Wagner Act (or as it is more commonly known, the National Labor Relations Act) gives employees the right, if they choose by majority vote, to have a union represent them to the employer to establish wages, hours, and working conditions. The act affirmed employees' rights to form, join, or assist labor organizations; to bargain collectively; and to choose their own bargaining representatives through majority vote. In addition, it established the NLRB to administer and enforce the act. The law identifies five unfair labor practices on the part of management: (a) interference with the efforts of employees to organize, (b) domination of a labor organization by an employer, (c) discrimination in the hiring or tenure of employees to discourage union affiliation, (d) discrimination for filing charges or giving testimony under the Act, and (e) refusal to bargain collectively with a representative of labor.
The Taft-Hartley Act of 1947 (Labor-Management Relations Act)This law revised the Wagner Act and was intended to balance power between unions and management. Taft-Hartley allowed employees to refrain from union activity as well as to engage in it. Also, the closed shop (in which only union members could be hired) was outlawed, and written agreement was required from employees before deducting union dues from paychecks. In addition, the law said unions comprised of supervisors did not need to be recognized. Employers were ensured of their right to free speech and were given the right to file unfair labor practice charges against unions. Also, certification elections (voting for union representation) could not be held more frequently than once a year, and employees were given the right to initiate decertification elections.
The Landrum-Griffith Act of 1959 (Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act)This law created a "Bill of Rights" for union members, and it regulates the internal affairs of unions. In essence, the intent of the act was to protect employees from corrupt or discriminatory unions. Controls were established on increasing dues, and also on suspending and fining union members. The act also tightened some of the loopholes in Taft-Hartley. It also prohibited former convicts from holding union office for the first five years after their release from prison.
The National Labor Relations BoardThe NLRB has two main functions: (a) to conduct and police secret ballot elections and (b) to investigate and prosecute unfair labor practice charges.
For more information about this book, visit the SHRMStore.
You have successfully saved this page as a bookmark.
Please confirm that you want to proceed with deleting bookmark.
You have successfully removed bookmark.
Please log in as a SHRM member before saving bookmarks.
Please sign in as a SHRM member before saving bookmarks.
Please purchase a SHRM membership before saving bookmarks.
An error has occurred
Recommended for you
SHRM Member Discounts Program
SHRM’s HR Vendor Directory contains over 10,000 companies