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  • Print publication year: 2019
  • Online publication date: November 2019

26 - Organizational Power for Workers within the Firm

from Part V - Barriers to Bargaining a Good Contract


The United States has a multidimensional set of employment law protections. From minimum wage and health and safety standards to antidiscrimination and antiretaliation protections, the law provides specific standards and structures to shield workers from egregious employer behavior and remedy the harms inflicted. These mandatory protections dovetail with the organizational power that labor law is intended to confer. The National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) provides for worker representation and obligates employers to bargain with these representatives over terms and conditions of employment. Labor law specifically provides employees with representation and requires management to negotiate with those representatives. And labor law professors have marveled at the spare commands of the NLRA and the depth of the Board’s interpretive nuance, as refined over 80 years.