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On Pressure to Sign an Organizing Card from the Perspective of Employees...

I'm probably the only HR site that consistently talks about the downside of the Employee Free Choice Act, which would allow unions to organize workplaces, without workers voting for unionization in elections with secret ballots.  Instead, under the act, unions could use the "card check" system, and once a majority of a company's employees signed a card expressing consent, the union would be automatically certified as the bargaining agent for all the workers.

It's easy to look at my posts on the EFCA and simply claim I'm an agent of business, not employees.  But, what pro-union types won't tell you is that most employees rely on the fact they'll have the ability to change their minds, if they sign an organizing card, via the secret election the law now guarantees.

Why can't they make that decsion before they sign the card?  Simple aspects of human nature called pressure and intimidation.  Check out the video below from The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation documenting the experiences of Dana Corporation employees in Albion, Indiana.  (Hat tip to Seth Borden for the clip.)

If the EFCA passes in 2009, there will be a lot of stranded employees.  Unfortuantely, if you are an HR pro, they'll be in your office telling you they signed the card but really didn't want to be represented.


Michael Haberman, SPHR

Thanks Kris! Great post. I put it on my blog as well to broaden the audience (ever so slightly, but nonetheless). Keep up the great work, and thanks for the tip on the imbed.

I think this is legislation of the worse kind. BTW, if you have not seen it there is a blog called the Employee Free Choice Blog, that keeps up to date on the legislation.

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