Weekend News and Commentary: May 31- June 1 

Published June 1st, 2014 -  - 06.01.14


The NLRB has released documents detailing a new “referral agreement” with OSHA, wherein OSHA will inform whistleblowers that certain untimely retaliation claims under the OSH-Act may still be actionable and referred to the NLRB. The National Law Review discusses the changes, and the NLRB’s memorandum on the agreement can be found here.

The L.A. Times reports that the union representing over 60,000 grocery workers in California has reached a deal with employers, avoiding a potentially crippling strike. In 2003, a deadlock in negotiations had resulted in a 141 day strike which left union members with debt and reportedly cost groceries $2 billion. Meanwhile, the New York Post reports that New York public school hours remain in limbo until its teacher union completes voting on a new contract this Tuesday. 

The New York Times covers the rising number U.S. manufacturers that are relocating their plants to Mexico, instead of China. As wages in China have rapidly increased, “American manufacturers of all sizes are looking south to Mexico with what economists describe as an eagerness not seen since the early years of the North American Free Trade Agreement in the 1990s.” 

The Wall Street Journal reports that that the number of Americans filing claims for new jobless benefits has remained at pre-recession levels. J.P. Morgan Chase economist Daniel Silver noted that “the trend in the data is indicative of some recent improvement in the labor market.”

The New York Times revisited its own archives, discussing a piece that appeared on its pages on May 25, 1964, “U.S. Finds Unions Gaining Members, Reversing Trend.” Though union membership has since fallen by almost half, one trend seemed to remain consistent over fifty years: “Government workers continue to account for a growing share of those remaining union members.”

Forbes continues coverage from the Wall Street Journal on unions that may strike in the face of higher health insurance costs.

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