NLRB Rules Against Dissenting Delaware Poultry Workers in Dispute with UFCW Local

One of the more enduring principles of labor law in America is that workers who are unhappy with their union representation have the right of exit. The current National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) seems determined to narrow if not eliminate this right. On April 21, the board, by 3-1, ruled in Mountaire Farms Inc. that all ballots cast by about 800 Delaware poultry workers as part of an effort to decertify a local affiliate of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) must be destroyed. A number of workers at the plant had challenged the basis for applying the “contract bar,” which prevents workers from holding a vote until at least three years into the contract period. After the ruling, National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation President Mark Mix accused the board of using labor law as “a protection racket for incumbent union officials.”  

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