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Sheet Metal Workers Local 112, Elmira / Jamestown, New York

Labor Law Quiz - Answers

1. It is lawful for a company to discipline a worker for soliciting union cards in a work area during non-work time.

FALSE. The general rule is that employers may not adopt a "no-solicitation” rule, which bars workers from signing union cards in work areas during non work time. There are exceptions in certain workplaces, such as hospitals or retail stores, where it may be lawful to bar workers from signing cards in work areas.

2. Workers can lawfully distribute union literature during non-work time in non-work areas.

TRUE. The general rule is that workers can distribute union literature during non work time in non work areas, e.g. during breaks and lunch. It should be noted that workers could talk about the union while working if they are allowed to talk about other non work topics.

3. It is unlawful for an employer to create the impression that he is spying on union meetings.

TRUE. It is a violation for employers to create the impression that they are spying on union meetings or other union activities.

4. Undocumented workers are covered by the protections of the National Labor Relations Act.

TRUE. Undocumented workers are covered by the NLRA

5. An employer can fire a supervisor for making pro-union statements.

TRUE. Since supervisors are not covered by the NLRA, they can be fired for speaking out in favor of the union. The only thing that supervisors cannot be fired for is for refusing to break the law.

6. A person is considered to be a "'supervisor' under the National Labor Relations Act if he or she has a supervisory title and is paid more than the unit employees.

FALSE. The definition of a supervisor is someone who has the authority to hire, transfer, suspend, lay-off, recall, promote, discharge, assign, reward, or discipline other employees, or to recommend these acts. Being a supervisor requires the use of independent judgment. A person's title does not determine this issue.

7. It is against the law for the employer to take away benefits in retaliation against workers for organizing.

TRUE. It is a violation to retaliate against workers by taking away their benefits.

8. If workers are engaged in an "unfair labor practice strike," they cannot be permanently replaced.

TRUE. An unfair labor practice strike is a strike called to protest an unfair labor practice. During a valid unfair labor practice strike, it is unlawful for employers to permanently replace workers. Once the strike is called off, and there is an unconditional offer to return, the workers must be taken back. On the other hand, during economic strikes, it is lawful to permanently replace strikers.

9. To win a NLRB election, the union must get 60% of the votes cast.

FALSE. To win a NLRB election, a union must get 50% + 1 of the votes cast.

10. Either side can file objections to an election within seven days of the vote.

TRUE. Either the union or the company can file objections to the election within seven days. Objectionable conduct by the company includes a pattern of unfair labor practices after the petition is filed, violations of the 24 hour rule (which prohibits captive audience speeches within 24 hours before the election), unfair election conditions, etc.