Legislative Memo


A.3292 (John)



Union organizing at residential facilities for the disabled



April 14, 2005


This bill would amend the labor law and permit designation of a collective bargaining representative through the use of the “card check” at residential facilities for the disabled. The Business Council opposes its enactment.

Denying the Secret Ballot Election
By permitting the designation of a collective bargaining representative through the use of “card check,” the Legislature is denying individual employees the right to secretly chose or reject the representation of a union.

Authorization cards are not necessarily a reliable indicator of employee sentiment since there is no balance of information provided to the employee at the time that the signature is sought.

Only the secret ballot provides the employee with an environment free of pressure from either side in order to make the decision to accept or reject union representation.

Denying important employer information
Choosing or rejecting unionization is one of the most important workplace decisions that an employee will ever make. Employees need information to make their decision. This is why the organizing “campaign” has been such an important part of the process for decades.

During a “campaign,” the union and the employer have an opportunity to provide information to employees in an attempt to convince the employees that their approach is better, all under appropriate rules contained in federal or state labor law.

“Card check” eliminates the organizing “campaign” and removes the employer as a source of information for employees. The information provided to employees during “card check” is one-sided, contains no checks and balances on the validity of the information provided and is conducted without the scrutiny of state or federal labor law.

This bill is another example of the movement toward “top down” organizing where rights that employees have enjoyed for decades are being denied.

For these reasons, The Business Council respectfully requests that this bill not be reported by the Assembly Labor Committee.