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Judge Asks U.S. Labor Board to Delay Rule Forcing Union Posters

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- A federal judge in Washington asked the National Labor Relations Board to delay enforcing a rule that companies inform employees of their rights to form a union.

U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson made the request today after hearing from groups led by the National Association of Manufacturers and National Federation of Independent Businesses that challenged the board’s power to require union-organizing posters in the workplace.

“We do not believe the law bears out that they have the authority to require notice postings for all employers,” Joe Trauger, vice president for human resources policy at the manufacturers’ group, told reporters before oral arguments on the groups’ lawsuit to throw out the standard.

The NLRB, which investigates unfair labor practices, in August ordered employers to display notices informing workers about their rights to form a union and bargain on contracts. Companies using posters to announce personnel rules or policies must add a notice about the right to bargain.

The NLRB said the National Labor Relations Act gives it the authority to pursue new workplace rules such as the proposed requirement.

The notices would have to be posted by Jan. 31.

The AFL-CIO and other union groups praised the labor board’s proposal when it was issued.

The case is National Association of Manufacturers v. National Labor Relations Board, 1:11-cv-1629, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia (Washington).

To contact the reporter on this story: Holly Rosenkrantz in Washington at hrosenkrantz@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Larry Liebert at lliebert@bloomberg.net

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