Decision 2602M – City of Commerce

LA-CE-1098-M

Decision Date: December 11, 2018

Decision Type: PERB Decision

Description:  The ALJ found that an employer violated employee and employee organization rights by interviewing two employees in advance of an arbitration hearing, because it did not assure them that their participation was voluntary and that they would not be punished for their responses or their refusal to answer any questions, and because it inquired into the union’s arbitration strategy.

Disposition:  The Board affirmed and adopted the proposed decision.

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Perc Vol: 43
Perc Index: 89

Decision Headnotes

101.00000 – PERB: OPERATION, JURISDICTION, AUTHORITY; APPLICABILITY OF AND CONFLICTS WITH OTHER STATUTES
101.03000 – NLRA/LMRDA Precedent

When asked to follow private-sector authority, the Board must determine whether the underlying reasoning is consistent with the language and policies of the PERB-administered statutes.

300.00000 – UNFAIR PRACTICE ISSUES; PROTECTED ACTIVITIES
300.05000 – Grievances

Employee organizations have robust rights to represent employees in the grievance process, which is perhaps the most important point at which employee organizations represent their members in their day-to-day employment relations.

1402.00000 – GENERAL LEGAL PRINCIPLES; WAIVER
1402.02000 – Union’s Waiver of Employee or Organizational Rights

Union’s failure to cite legal authority against employer’s intended course of action does not absolve the employer of interfering with employee and union rights.

1205.00000 – REMEDIES FOR UNFAIR PRACTICES; MISCELLANEOUS REMEDIAL PROVISIONS
1205.03000 – Notices; Posting, Reading, and Mailing

The Board finds no authority for declining to order a notice posting based on the relative lack of severity of the unfair practices committed.

1200.00000 – REMEDIES FOR UNFAIR PRACTICES; CEASE AND DESIST ORDERS
1200.01000 – In General

The Board finds no authority for declining to issue a cease-and-desist order based on the relative lack of severity of the unfair practices committed.

1107.00000 – CASE PROCESSING PROCEDURES;PROCEDURES BEFORE THE BOARD
1107.11000 – Request for Oral Argument

Request for oral argument denied where the issues before the Board are sufficiently clear that oral argument is unnecessary.

409.00000 – EMPLOYER INTERFERENCE, RESTRAINT, COERCION; DEFENSES
409.05000 – Union Consent or Waiver

Union’s failure to cite legal authority against employer’s intended course of action does not absolve the employer of interfering with employee and union rights.

402.00000 – EMPLOYER INTERFERENCE, RESTRAINT, COERCION; QUESTIONING/INTERROGATING EMPLOYEES
402.03000 – Union Activities or Membership

Interviews of employees who have been identified as union witnesses in an arbitration hearing interfere with employee and union rights because employees were not assured their participation was voluntary, and employer inquired into union’s arbitration strategy.

402.00000 – EMPLOYER INTERFERENCE, RESTRAINT, COERCION; QUESTIONING/INTERROGATING EMPLOYEES
402.01000 – In General

Interviews of employees who have been identified as union witnesses in an arbitration hearing interfere with employee and union rights because employees were not assured their participation was voluntary, and employer inquired into union’s arbitration strategy.

400.00000 – EMPLOYER INTERFERENCE, RESTRAINT, COERCION; EMPLOYER INTERFERENCE WITH, RESTRAINT, OR COERCION OF EMPLOYEES
400.01000 – In General; Standards

Interference may be found without evidence that the respondent had a conniving or underhanded purpose, that any employees subjectively felt threatened or intimidated, or that employees were deterred from engaging in protected activity.

400.00000 – EMPLOYER INTERFERENCE, RESTRAINT, COERCION; EMPLOYER INTERFERENCE WITH, RESTRAINT, OR COERCION OF EMPLOYEES
400.01000 – In General; Standards

A prima facie case of interference may be stated without evidence that an employee has already engaged in protected activity, so long as the employer’s conduct has a tendency to deter future protected activity.

1402.00000 – GENERAL LEGAL PRINCIPLES; WAIVER
1402.04000 – By Acquiescence/Conduct

Union’s failure to cite legal authority against employer’s intended course of action does not absolve the employer of interfering with employee and union rights.