Letter to the House opposing the Workforce Fairness and Democracy Act (H.R. 3094)
November 29, 2011
On behalf of the 3.2 million members of the National Education Association, we urge you to VOTE NO on the misleadingly named "Workforce Fairness and Democracy" Act (H.R. 3094), scheduled for possible floor vote this week. This dangerous bill will not protect jobs. Rather, it will undermine worker protections and put American workers and working families at risk. Votes on this issue may be included in the NEA Legislative Report Card for the 112th Congress.
H.R. 3094 is a reckless bill that will destroy workers’ rights. It will allow employers to obscure the process for electing to create a union and in so doing effectively eliminate collective bargaining rights. Under H.R. 3094, employers would be permitted to delay indefinitely a union election. These delays would allow more intimidation and harassment of employees, including hiring union busting companies. This attack on workers’ rights departs from a long-preserved American tradition of democracy in the workplace.
While we strongly oppose the underlying bill, we do support several amendments:
- Amendment #1 by Representative Tim Bishop (NY) -- would give the NLRB authority to impose sanctions for presenting a frivolous or vexatious filing during pre-election proceedings.
- Amendment # by Representative Boswell (IA) -- would prevent employers that have paid any executive compensation bonuses in excess of 10,000 percent of the annual compensation of the average employee from engaging in open-ended litigation. Such parties are required to state their issues or positions at the outset of pre-election hearings.
- Amendment # 4 by Representative Walz (MN) -- would prevent the bill from applying to businesses that have been cited for violating labor laws in the past year against employees who are veterans of the Armed Forces.
- Amendment #5 by Representative Jackson-Lee (TX) -- would strike a section of the bill to ensure that employers would not be able to unnecessarily delay an election.
Millions of Americans are out of work. Families are struggling to keep roofs over their heads and food on the table. Yet, instead of focusing on creating jobs, Congress is wasting time undermining the basic organization speaking on behalf of the middle class. Our families, communities, and our nation simply cannot afford to continue on this path of perverse priorities and attacks on working families.
H.R. 3094 is anti-democratic, unfair, and harmful to the middle class. We strongly urge you to VOTE NO on H.R. 3094.
Director of Center for Advocacy
Manager of Federal Advocacy