NLRB issues final rule on posting of workplace notices

By Kimberly Atkins The Daily Record Newswire The National Labor Relations Board has issued its final rule requiring most employers to post notices informing employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act. The final rule is set to go into effect Nov. 14. The rule requires private-sector employers covered by the Act, including companies whose workers are not unionized, to post the notice where other workplace notices are typically posted. According to a statement by the NLRB, the notice states that employees have the right to act together to improve wages and working conditions, to unionize, to bargain collectively with their employer, and to refrain from any of these activities. When the proposed rule was announced earlier this year, business groups and some employment attorneys questioned the agency's authority to issue such a regulation, and predicted that the matter could end up in litigation. The NLRB reported receiving more than 7,000 comments during the comment period after the proposed rule was announced. In response to the comments, the rule was modified, NLRB officials said. For example, although the proposed rule would have required employers to distribute the notice via e-mail, voice mail, text messaging or related electronic communications if they customarily communicate with their employees in that manner, the final rule does not require such electronic distribution. The rule does require every covered employer to post the notice on an Internet or intranet site if personnel rules and policies are customarily posted there. Knowing and willful failure to post the notice may be considered evidence of an unlawful motive in an unfair labor practice case involving other alleged violations of the NLRA, and the Board may also levy fines. Board Chairman Wilma B. Liebman and members Mark Gaston Pearce and Craig Becker approved the final rule. Member Brian Hayes dissented. Copies of the notice are available in NLRB regional officers as well as in downloadable form on the NLRB's website. Published: Thu, Sep 8, 2011