Just prior to Labor Day the NLRB has announce the development of a new app. The NLRB publicized the app with these words, “The app provides employers, employees and unions with information regarding their rights and obligations under the National Labor Relations Act.” However, obviously, the app is focused on employees. The NLRB further advertises that more than $44 million was collected in 2012 in back pay and fines and that 1,200 employees were offered reinstatement as a result of NLRB enforcement efforts.
I am bothered by government agencies that are so blatantly political and one-sided. Tops on the list is the NLRB. But not far behind is every other governmental agency with oversight of the workplace. Success is always measured by the amount of money collected for employees by the particular agency. When do we hear of any NLRB efforts to investigate and prosecute unfair labor practices committed by employees or unions?
Consider also the EEOC or DFEH, two agencies that investigate claims of unlawful harassment or discrimination. These agencies also measure success in the amount of cases and money recovered on behalf of employees. If these agencies were truly “neutral” as they claim, why wouldn’t they step in to protect an employer who is sued civilly by an employee whose case an agency investigated and dismissed? Since many employers are small businesses, the filing of a lawsuit, even one without merit, presents a serious economic challenge. If the EEOC or DFEH investigated the case before it was filed, and found no merit to the case, why wouldn’t it be the right thing to do to step in to assist the employer? Isn’t that what a neutral government agency would do?
Thanks government. You really are the solution!