December 3, 2021

Volume XI, Number 337

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November 30, 2021

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GC Abruzzo’s Aggressive Remedial Agenda Begins

On October 8, 2021, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) West Los Angeles regional office issued an unfair labor practice (ULP) complaint against the Daily Grill for allegedly violating section 8(a)(5) of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by engaging in a pattern of delay intended to frustrate the bargaining process, according to the NLRB press release.

The allegations arise from the employer’s first contract negotiations with UNITE HERE Local 11, the union certified to represent Daily Grill’s employees. Negotiations allegedly ran from November 13, 2019, through December 11, 2020, but since then, the employer has allegedly refused to meet and bargain with the union.

This complaint is notable for the remedial actions it seeks. Here, among other remedies, the complaint asks for an order requiring the employer to bargain in good faith with the union for a minimum of 24 hours a month (for at least six hours per session) until a collective bargaining agreement or lawful impasse is reached and to reimburse the expenses incurred by the union in unproductive bargaining expenses from November 19, 2019, until the employer begins bargaining in good faith. Given the specificity of the remedy sought, this complaint is an early example of the aggressive prosecution policies of new General Counsel (GC) Jennifer Abruzzo (as outlined in her September 8, 2021, Memorandum 21-06). It also portends probable forthcoming changes to the legal landscape under a Biden-appointed NLRB.

Section 8(a)(5) of the NLRA requires employers to bargain in good faith with the certified bargaining representative of its employees; however, “good faith” is not defined by a specific template of the number, frequency, or duration of bargaining sessions.   The complaint against the Daily Grill demonstrates GC Abruzzo’s initiative to introduce strict remedies for NLRA violations, including imposing bright-line rules on the negotiation process when an employer is found to have violated the Act. The complaint exemplifies the region’s eagerness to push forward GC Abruzzo’s goals through burdensome new remedies. Employers should accordingly take caution in assessing their bargaining and labor relations strategies as the complaint demonstrates the regions are ready to quickly push forward on the GC’s month-old goals.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2021National Law Review, Volume XI, Number 292
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About this Author

Laura Pierson-Scheinberg Employment Lawyer Jackson Lewis
Principal

Laura A. Pierson-Scheinberg is a Principal in the San Francisco, California, and Baltimore, Maryland, offices of Jackson Lewis P.C.

Ms. Pierson-Scheinberg represents employers in labor and employment matters, with a particular focus on traditional labor issues, union elections and unfair labor practice charges. She has extensive experience in collective bargaining, from serving as chief spokesperson to developing strategy behind the scenes. Her background includes bargaining for both large and small clients from a local to a national level in a wide range of...

415-796-5408
Kymiya St.Pierre, Jackson Lewis Law Firm, Labor and Employment Attorney
Associate

Kymiya St. Pierre is an Associate in the Orange County, California, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. Her practice focuses on representing employers in workplace law matters, including preventive advice and counsel.

Prior to joining Jackson Lewis, Ms. St. Pierre represented employees and defended employers in employment litigation matters. Her experience representing employees has provided her with an effective skillset in anticipating strategies used by plaintiffs’ counsel. She has appeared in both State and Federal court.

949-885-1360
Thomas V. Walsh, Jackson Lewis, employment arbitration Lawyer, White plains, Union Organizing Attorney
Shareholder

Thomas V. Walsh is a Shareholder in the White Plains, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. Since joining the firm in 1986, Mr. Walsh has represented employers in all aspects of labor and employment law and litigation.

Mr. Walsh has represented employers before numerous state and federal courts, regulatory agencies, as well as in numerous arbitrations. Mr. Walsh has extensive experience in representing employers faced with union organizing drives and in proceedings before the National Labor Relations Board. He has an...

914-872-6912
Richard F. Vitarelli Harford  Connecticut Labor Relations Lawyer at Jackson Lewis Law Firm
Principal

Richard F. Vitarelli is a Principal in the Hartford, Connecticut, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. Part of the firm’s national labor practice, he has over two decades of experience representing employers nationally in strategic labor relations, collective bargaining, and union organizing, including in the context of mergers and acquisitions, corporate restructuring and contract administration. He serves as general labor and employment counsel for employers and multi-employer associations in various industries, including construction, manufacturing, health care and senior living,...

860-522-0404
Jonathan J. Spitz, Jackson Lewis Law Firm, Labor Employment Attorney, Atlanta
Shareholder

Jonathan J. Spitz is a Principal in the Atlanta, Georgia, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He is Co-Leader of the firm’s Labor and Preventive Practices Group.

Mr. Spitz lectures extensively, conducts management training, and advises clients with respect to legislative and regulatory initiatives, corporate strategies, business ethics, social media issues and the changing regulatory landscape. He understands the practical and operational needs of corporate America, helping design pragmatic strategies to minimize risk and maximize performance. He has represented...

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