President Joe Biden is inching closer to changing the makeup of the National Labor Relations Board, as the terms of two NLRB members appointed under former President Donald Trump will expire in August.
Labor lawyers are closely watching President Biden’s nominees and analyzing their stances and past work. United Food and Commercial Workers Assistant General Counsel Amanda Jaret discussed these nominations and other labor-related legal issues on America’s Work Force Union Podcast.
President Biden has nominated David Prouty and Gwynne Wilcox to serve on the NLRB, both of whom represent or have represented labor unions.
Prouty was nominated in late June. Currently, he is the General Counsel of Service Employees International Union Local 32BJ. He was previously the General Counsel for the Major League Baseball Players Association and UNITE Here.
Nominated in May, Gwynne Wilcox is currently a partner at Levy Ratner. She advises and strategizes with unions in the areas of collective bargaining, grievance handling, arbitrations, mediation, internal union administrative and constitutional issues.
Although the NLRB does not rule on cases with the authority of the Supreme Court, they do settle disputes and enforce rulings that come before the board.
Supreme Court cases
Moving to other legal topics, Jaret touched on a few recent Supreme Court rulings.
One dealt with farms and the ability to organize those workers. In the Cedar Point Nursery case, the Court ruled by a 6-3 decision that organizers are not permitted to step foot on farms to speak with workers.
Jaret said the majority opinion ruled union organizers coming onto farm property is considered taking of prosperity and that is unconstitutional.
In another case, the Court ruled a regulation that required landlords to allow cable companies to install permanent equipment in buildings was also unconstitutional. Again, they cited the taking of property. The State Cable Commission in the case found that compensation of $1 was sufficient to allow companies to permanently install equipment.