Decision 2590E – Petaluma City Elementary School District/Joint Union High School District
Decision Date: October 22, 2018
Decision Type: PERB Decision
Description: Upholding and adopting a proposed decision of an Administrative Law Judge, the Board concluded that the Petaluma City Elementary School District (District) interfered with employee and organizational rights, in violation of Educational Employment Relations Act (EERA) section 3543.5, subdivisions (a) and (b), by: (1) prohibiting employees represented by the Petaluma Federation of Teachers, Local 1881 (Local 1881) from distributing literature “of a political or union nature” on the District’s premises, including during non-work time and in non-work areas; and (2) by directing employees to refrain from distributing pamphlets “during the workday,” without regard to employee breaks or other nonwork time.
Disposition: The Board reversed the OGC’s dismissal and remanded the case for issuance of a complaint.
Perc Vol: 43
Perc Index: 65
401.03000 – Ban on Distribution or Solicitation
Following remand and a formal hearing in this case, the ALJ concluded that the District interfered with protected rights, as alleged in the complaint, when, on September 5, and October 10, 2014, its agents sent e-mail messages prohibiting employees from distributing “flyers of a political or union nature” and from “handing out pamphlets” anywhere on the District’s premises at any time during the workday, without regard to non-duty time, such as employee breaks, or to unofficial “downtime” to the extent the District authorizes or permits limited employee solicitation for other non-work-related causes during worktime. (See, Petaluma, supra, PERB Decision No. 2485, pp. 50-51.) In finding liability on both counts of interference, the ALJ relied, in part, on uncontested testimony from Local 1881-represented employees that they had received the District’s September 5, 2014 and October 10, 2014 e-mail messages.