Dallas, Texas (WiredPRNews.com) — The Employee Free Choice Act (“Act”) is a proposed federal law that would amend the National Labor Relations Act to enable employees to more easily form labor organizations and negotiate initial collective bargaining agreements with employers.
If signed into law, the Act would require an employer to recognize a union if a majority of workers in a proposed bargaining unit signed forms indicating that they wanted representation. The Act would also provide that when a newly formed union and an employer are unable to agree on an initial contract within ninety days, either party could request mediation. If such mediation proved unsuccessful after thirty days, the parties would then be subject to binding arbitration.
Finally, the Act would strengthen penalties against companies that break laws during organizing campaigns and the negotiations of a first contract. It would impose civil fines of up to $20,000.00 per violation on employers who willfully or repeatedly violate workers’ rights. It would also require employers to pay triple back pay damages to workers who have been illegally fired or discriminated against during union campaigns.