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November 1, 2015

Two More Studies Show “Ambush Elections” Opponents Were Right, Rule Did Drastically Cut Time To Prepare For Union Elections

Politico’s “Morning Shift” reported last week that data from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) reveal that, after the board’s “ambush elections” rule was implemented earlier this year, the time for labor union elections was cut in half. According to Politico, an NLRB PowerPoint presentation obtained by the newspaper found “the median time between the filing of an election petition and an NLRB-directed union election was 32 days, down from 67 days during the same period in 2014.” 

The median number of days between an election petition and the pre-election hearing was nine days, down from 13. Additionally, Politico said union elections were held an average of 23 days after an agreement with the employer was reached, down from 37 days, and the median number of days between the filing of a petition and the certification of an election was 35 days, down from 49. 

The NRLB’s conclusions are similar to findings Connecting the Dots discussed this past summer. They are also similar to a study released last week by the Atlanta, Ga. law firm Fisher and Phillips. According to The Hill, that firm found the average union election takes place about 27 days, down from 40 days before the “ambush elections” rule took effect in April. The Hill said in at least 27 cases, union elections happened in less than two weeks and that the quickest election took just five days. 

The good news is that the business community seems to have been prepared for the NRLB’s rule change. Since the rule took effect, the NLRB found unions have won the same percentage of elections (about 69 percent) that they had last year. (The Fisher and Phillips study found unions have won 67 percent of elections since April.)