Union-friendly labor board rules against Vegas casino

| March 29, 2011

The National Labor Relations Board, which has become a liberal bastion in the Obama era after the president packed it with union-friendly appointees, has ruled that the MGM-owned Las Vegas casino New York, New York violated labor law by barring off-duty restaurant workers from distributing handbills on casino property.

The restaurants were operated by a third-party contractor, and the employees were handing out literature promoting union organizing attempts, both outside restaurant entrances and the main entrance to the casino.

Chairman Wilma Liebman, Craig Becker and Mark Pearce comprised the majority in the 3-1 ruling, writing that, "[T]he property owner may lawfully exclude such employees only where the owner is able to demonstrate that their activity significantly interferes with his use of the property or where exclusion is justified by another legitimate business reason, including, but not limited to, the need to maintain production and discipline…"

Becker was a former counsel for the SEIU and AFL-CIO, and was recess-appointed by Obama after fierce GOP opposition blocked his full confirmation.

The lone dissenter, Republican Brian Hayes, wrote that the ruling, “artificially equates the Section 7 rights of a contractor’s employees with those of the property owner’s employees, pays only lip service to the owner’s property interests, and gives no consideration to the critical factor of alternative means of communication.”

Katie Gage, executive director of the Workforce Fairness Institute (WFI), said in a statement that “The NLRB continues to prove they are nothing more than an advocacy arm of Big Labor and their actions call into question why our tax dollars should be directed toward a regulatory agency committed to job-killing policies.  The board’s finding in New York New York will result in more costs and work disruptions for businesses, which equals less jobs and opportunities.”

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