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Weekend News & Commentary — May 26-27, 2018

Published May 27th, 2018 -

On Friday Professor Sachs wrote for Vox to explain how the NFL’s new policy punishing players who kneel during the national anthem in protest of police brutality and racism violates labor law and likely the First Amendment.  As Sejal summarized in her post, Professor Sachs’s labor law argument is two-fold: first, in announcing its policy unilaterally, the NFL illegally bypassed the union in violat... More »

The NFL’s New “Take a Knee” Ban Violates Federal Labor Law

Published May 25th, 2018 -

This week, the NFL announced a new policy punishing players who “take a knee” in protest of police brutality and racism during the national anthem. The new policy requires all players on the field to “stand and show respect” for the flag — and if they don’t, their teams will be fined and individual players may be punished. The new policy does allow athletes to stay in... More »

Today’s News & Commentary — May 25, 2018

Published May 25th, 2018 -

A groundbreaking new study confirms that unions help fight economic inequality, finding that union density was a key driver of the “Great Compression,” a period from 1940 to 1980 in which income inequality in America was significantly less severe than today. The authors, economists Henry Farber, Dan Herbst, Ilyana Kuziemko, and Suresh Naidu, write that the results suggest “unions have a significan... More »

Trump’s Justice Sticks it to Workers

Published May 24th, 2018 -

After the oral argument in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, I wrote that the five Republican appointees on the Supreme Court would have to put their thumbs heavily on the scale for the employers to prevail. Sadly, it was no surprise that this is exactly what happened. At one point, Justice Gorsuch asserted that using the National Labor Relations Act and the Norris-LaGuardia Act to limit the scope of t... More »

Today’s News & Commentary — May 24, 2018

Published May 24th, 2018 -

The NFL yesterday announced a new policy punishing players who kneel in protest during the national anthem, drawing fierce condemnation from civil rights advocates and the players’ union. The new policy does allow athletes to stay in locker rooms rather than attending the anthem, in an attempt to push players’ protests off camera. The NFL’s decision may tee up a fight with the players’... More »

Epic Fall Out: The Supreme Court and Concerted Activity

Published May 23rd, 2018 -

In September, we worried that the Trump Administration was using Epic Systems (aka Murphy Oil) to lay the groundwork for curtailing protection of concerted activity outside the union organizing and collective bargaining context.  To our relief, Epic Systems does limited damage to section 7 of the NLRA: the Court refuses to recognize in § 7 a right to class action litigation or class arbitration, b... More »

Today’s News & Commentary — May 23, 2018

Published May 23rd, 2018 -

The Supreme Court’s decision in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, NLRB v. Murphy Oil, and Ernst & Young, LLP v. Morris continued to generate reactions on Tuesday.  David Leonhardt explained in The New York Times that the ruling makes Corporate America more powerful at the expense of workers and reminded readers that the decision would have gone the other way if not for Senate Republicans’ refusal i... More »


Ninth Circuit Puts the Brakes on Uber Unionization

Published May 23rd, 2018 -

On May 11, the Ninth Circuit dealt a blow to a Seattle city ordinance permitting Lyft and Uber drivers to unionize. However, the court’s ruling was not entirely unfavorable for “gig economy” workers. Lyft and Uber, along with... More »

Today’s News & Commentary — May 22, 2018

Published May 22nd, 2018 -

Workers’ rights took a hit from a split Supreme Court yesterday in a 5-4 decision written by Justice Gorsuch that resolved three cases: Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, NLRB v. Murphy Oil, and Ernst & Young, LLP v. Morris.  OnLabor’s Maddy Joseph summarized the court’s decision in an extensive analysis yesterday, writing that More »

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