Decision I058E – Sweetwater Union High School District

LA-CO-1612-E

Decision Date: August 20, 2014

Decision Type: Injunctive Relief

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Perc Vol: 39
Perc Index: 31

Decision Headnotes

301.00000 – UNFAIR PRACTICE ISSUES; STRIKES, SLOWDOWNS AND WORK STOPPAGES
301.02000 – Pre-Impasse

A union’s strike preparations undertaken before impasse procedures have been exhausted do not constitute “reasonable cause” to believe that an unfair practice has been committed sufficient to justify PERB seeking injunctive relief from the courts in the absence of evidence that the union lacked the intent to reach an agreement. Unlike an actual work stoppage, preparing for a strike is more akin to speech protected by EERA. PERB has long held that speech in the workplace that is related to the legitimate concerns of employees is protected activity within the meaning of EERA section 3543. A union’s communications to bargaining unit members and to the employer regarding strike preparation, including strike threats and strike votes, without a work stoppage are not coercive activities under EERA.

802.00000 – UNION UNFAIR PRACTICES; UNLAWFUL STRIKES AND WORK STOPPAGES
802.01000 – In General

A union’s strike preparations undertaken before impasse procedures have been exhausted do not constitute “reasonable cause” to believe that an unfair practice has been committed sufficient to justify PERB seeking injunctive relief from the courts in the absence of evidence that the union lacked the intent to reach an agreement. Unlike an actual work stoppage, preparing for a strike is more akin to speech protected by EERA. PERB has long held that speech in the workplace that is related to the legitimate concerns of employees is protected activity within the meaning of EERA section 3543. A union’s communications to bargaining unit members and to the employer regarding strike preparation, including strike threats and strike votes, without a work stoppage are not coercive activities under EERA.

804.00000 – UNION UNFAIR PRACTICES; UNION BARGAINING CONDUCT
804.03000 – Strike as Unlawful Pressure Tactic

A union’s strike preparations undertaken before impasse procedures have been exhausted do not constitute “reasonable cause” to believe that an unfair practice has been committed sufficient to justify PERB seeking injunctive relief from the courts in the absence of evidence that the union lacked the intent to reach an agreement. Unlike an actual work stoppage, preparing for a strike is more akin to speech protected by EERA. PERB has long held that speech in the workplace that is related to the legitimate concerns of employees is protected activity within the meaning of EERA section 3543. A union’s communications to bargaining unit members and to the employer regarding strike preparation, including strike threats and strike votes, without a work stoppage are not coercive activities under EERA.

1207.00000 – REMEDIES FOR UNFAIR PRACTICES; INJUNCTIVE RELIEF
1207.02000 – Standards for Obtaining Injunctive Relief

A union’s strike preparations undertaken before impasse procedures have been exhausted do not constitute “reasonable cause” to believe that an unfair practice has been committed sufficient to justify PERB seeking injunctive relief from the courts, especially where the parties continued to negotiate. Unlike an actual work stoppage, preparing for a strike is more akin to speech protected by EERA. PERB has long held that speech in the workplace that is related to the legitimate concerns of employees is protected activity within the meaning of EERA section 3543. A union’s communications to bargaining unit members and to the employer regarding strike preparation, including strike threats and strike votes, without a work stoppage are not coercive activities under EERA. The employer failed to show that students would suffer “considerable harm” if teachers struck during various exam periods.