They sued. At least, they got together under the umbrella of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to sue. They got a temporary injunction in the DC federal courts to stop the rule. They really, really don’t want you to see this poster. It must really be subversive, huh?
Well, see for yourself. Here’s exactly what the U.S. Chamber of Commerce doesn’t want you to know about your workplace rights:Employee Rights Under the National Labor Relations Act
The National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) guarantees the right of employees to organize and bargain collectively with their employers, and to engage in other protected concerted activity or to refrain from engaging in any of the above activity. Employees covered by the NLRA are protected from certain types of employer and union misconduct. This Notice gives you general information about your rights, and about the obligations of employers and unions under the NLRA.
Contact the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the Federal agency that investigates and resolves complaints under the NLRA, using the contact information supplied below, if you have any questions about specific rights that may apply in your particular workplace.
Under the NLRA, you have the right to:
• Organize a union to negotiate with your employer concerning your wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment.
• Form, join or assist a union.
• Bargain collectively through representatives of employees’ own choosing for a contract with your employer setting your wages, benefits, hours, and other working conditions.
• Discuss your wages and benefits and other terms and conditions of employment or union organizing with your co-workers or a union.
• Take action with one or more co-workers to improve your working conditions by, among other means, raising work-related complaints directly with your employer or with a government agency, and seeking help from a union.
• Strike and picket, depending on the purpose or means of the strike or the picketing.
• Choose not to do any of these activities, including joining or remaining a member of a union.
Under the NLRA, it is illegal for your employer to:
• Prohibit you from talking about or soliciting for a union during non-work time, such as before or after work or during break times; or from distributing union literature during non-work time, in non-work areas, such as parking lots or break rooms.
Under the NLRA, it is illegal for a union or for the union that represents you in bargaining with your employer to:
• Threaten or coerce you in order to gain your support for the union.
Wow. That’s it, you say? What’s the BFD? Well, I think it’s mostly these provisions big employer doesn’t want you to see:
Discussing wages and benefits with coworkers: The poster says, “Under the NLRA, you have the right to discuss your wages and benefits and other terms and conditions of employment . . . with your co-workers or a union.” Yet many employers take desperate measures to make sure you don’t know what coworkers are making and what benefits they have. Some put out written policies or put restrictions in contracts. That’s flat-out illegal. If you have a contract or if your employer has a policy saying you can’t discuss wages and benefits with coworkers, you can file a Charge Against Employer with NLRB right now. The other part they don’t want you to know about here is your right to grouse about working conditions with coworkers. You can grumble and complain during breaks, on Facebook, in Twitter, as long as you’re doing it with coworkers and they can’t fire or discipline you for it.
Discussing work-related complaints and working conditions with coworkers: The poster says, “Under the NLRA, you have the right to take action with one or more co-workers to improve your working conditions by, among other means, raising work-related complaints directly with your employer or with a government agency, and seeking help from a union.” If you complain about conditions on your own and on behalf of yourself, you aren’t protected. But you have the absolute right (assuming you aren’t a supervisor) to complain about working conditions on behalf of coworkers, to get together with coworkers to discuss and complain, and to get together to try to negotiate better working conditions. That is huge.
Employers like to crack down on employees who complain. They want to create an atmosphere where employees shut up and accept things as they are. Most of the time, it’s best to keep your mouth shut. But sometimes, you have to speak up. If working conditions are intolerable, if it feels like a prison, if you are being paid unfairly, if there’s a bully in the workplace, sometimes you have to speak up. You probably have the right to do so, as long as you aren’t a supervisor, and as long as you’re not alone.