Talk about team work. House and Senate Republicans have come together with a unique new strategy to attack workers’ rights and shut down the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). And their corporate sponsors are loving it.
First, Republican senators use Senate rules to block votes on qualified nominees to the NLRB. Then their tea party colleagues in the House move to pass a bill that would stop the NLRB from taking any action to ensure workers’ rights until the nominees their Senate pals are blocking are confirmed by the Senate.
That’s just part of the bill that House Speaker John Boehner (R–Ohio) is expected to bring to the floor later this week. The bill also would nullify all the decisions the board has made since President Obama, in January 2012, was forced to overcome Republican hostage-taking of the nominees by making recess appointments.
Says AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka:
Their ridiculous proposal would not only grind the board to a halt but prohibit it from enforcing any decision it’s made over the past year. This will hurt tens of thousands of workers who’ve been retaliated against for organizing for a voice on the job and tilt the scales even further in favor toward CEOs and corporate lobbyists.
Now you can speak up and tell your representative to stand up for workers and oppose H.R. 1120. Click here to send a message to your lawmaker to vote “No” on the bill.
In a letter to House members, AFL-CIO Government Affairs Director Bill Samuel says:
H.R. 1120 would shut down the board and deny workers a final, enforceable order from the NLRB when they have been illegally fired, retaliated against, denied the right to bargain with their employer, or otherwise had their legal rights violated. If this bill were enacted, employers could simply ignore the law, knowing that there could not be a timely decision against them by the NLRB. This would throw our system into chaos and deprive workers of their legal rights.
Since Republicans took control of the House after the 2010 elections, they have targeted the agency that protects workers’ rights, including multiple hearings attacking the board and more than two dozen measures in 2011 alone to defund the NLRB, weaken workers’ rights to fair union elections and undermine the NLRB’s authority to enforce labor laws.
H.R. 1120, says Samuel:
Fits into a larger strategy by opponents of the NLRB to undermine the rights of workers to decide whether or not they want to form a union and bargain for better wages and working conditions.
Tuesday, President Obama announced nominees to the NLRB. In a statement, Trumka says:
For America’s workers, businesses and the promotion of healthy commerce, putting forward a full, bipartisan package of nominees to the NLRB is the right thing to do.