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Interfering with or dominating a union (Section 8(a)(2))

Employees have the right to be represented by a union of their choice - not their employer's. Thus, for example, it is unlawful for an employer to recognize a union that lacks majority employee support (except in the construction industry), or that has majority support only because an employer coerced it.

Section 8(a)(2) of the Act makes it an unfair labor practice for an employer "to dominate or interfere with the formation or administration of any labor organization or contribute financial or other support to it." (An employer that violates Section 8(a)(2) also derivatively violates Section 8(a)(1).) For example, you may not

  • Establish and control a "company union."
  • Recognize a union after you are notified that another union has filed a valid election petition. (If your employees are already represented, however, you must continue to recognize and bargain with the incumbent union - unless it has lost majority status - even after a rival union files a valid petition.)
  • Recognize, bargain with, or execute an agreement with a minority union, unless you are an employer in the construction industry and the agreement is under Section 8(f) of the Act.
  • Recognize, bargain with, or execute an agreement with a union whose majority status you helped it obtain through unlawful assistance.
  • Engage in conduct that benefits one union at the expense of another, or that reasonably tends to coerce employees to support or join a union. (You may, however, tell your employees that you favor a particular union.)
  • Require or encourage employees to sign dues checkoff authorizations. (You may, however, give employees dues checkoff authorization forms.)
  • Remit dues to a union absent a validly executed dues checkoff authorization.
  • Fail to honor a timely revocation of a dues checkoff authorization.

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