NLRB to Employers: Recognize Unions Under Certain Circumstances

The Technology & Manufacturing Association’s Human Resource provider, SESCO, offered a short, concise update of a decision made last week by the National Labor Relations Board which affects company/union relations.


New Framework for Union Representation Proceedings


  • The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has issued a decision in Cemex Construction Materials Pacific, LLC announcing a new framework for determining when employers are required to bargain with unions without a representation election. The Cemex decision alters what employers can say about their direct relationship with employees, bans mandatory employee meetings about unions, and revives the Joy Silk doctrine (see below). It will transform union recognition procedures substantially. 


  • Under the new framework, when a union requests recognition on the basis that a majority of employees in an appropriate bargaining unit have designated the union as their representative, an employer must either recognize and bargain with the union or promptly file a petition seeking an election. However, if an employer who seeks an election commits any unfair labor practice that would require setting aside the election, the petition will be dismissed, and—rather than re-running the election—the Board will order the employer to recognize and bargain with the union.


  • The new Cemex standard differs from the historical Joy Silk standard, which required an employer to bargain with a union unless it had a good-faith doubt of the union’s majority status.


  • The NLRB also stated that the Cemex decision will be applied retroactively.
For more details on this decision from SESCO, email