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Protections for labor unions in New York

| Dec 16, 2020 | Firm News |

Labor unions are typically governed by federal law, including the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), which covers most unionized employees, the Railway Labor Act (RLA), which applies to the transportation industries (railroad, air, etc.), the Labor Management Relations Act (LMRA), among others. Those laws protect labor unions and give them the right to represent employees collectively in negotiating terms of employment and complaints.

New York also has their own state Labor Law Code. Under New York law, employees have the right to form a union. Under New York’s Labor Law Code, employees shall have the right of self-organization, to form, join, or assist labor organizations, free from interference, restraint, or coercion of employers.

It is against the law for an employer to interfere with its employee’s organization of a union. This interference is proscribed as spying upon or keeping under surveillance any activities of employees in engaging in the organization of a union. It is also an unfair labor practice for an employer to require an employee, as a condition of his or her employment, to join any company union or to refrain from forming or joining a labor organization of his or her own choosing.

An employer may also not refuse to bargain with the representatives of a union and employees involved in that union. An employer also must discuss complaints with representatives of the union.

Consulting an attorney with any complaints against an employer can help individuals understand their rights under federal and state labor law. There are many convoluted aspects to legal rules and speaking with an attorney who has experience dealing with these types of laws is the safest way to ensure your legal rights.