The Coalition for a Democratic Workplace consists of over 600 organizations, representing millions of businesses, which employ hundreds of millions of employees nationwide in nearly every industry. CDW members are joined by their mutual concern over recent actions by the NLRB, which threaten entrepreneurs, other employers, employees and economic growth. Our nationwide network consists of hundreds of national, state and local businesses, organizations, and individuals, providing us with substantial grassroots and grasstops operations.
CDW was originally formed in 2005 in opposition to the so-called Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), a bill that would have replaced secret ballot elections as the primary method for determining whether employees wish to form a union with “card check,” a process that would have required employees to vote for or against the union by signing or not signing union authorization cards in front of coworkers and union organizers. EFCA would have stripped workers of privacy and invited intimidation and coercion. The primary goal of the bill was to increase the number of dues paying union members by maximizing pressure on employees to unionize by making votes public to union organizers and coworkers that support the union. At the same time, the bill would have allowed the union to run covert campaigns, limiting workers’ access to information about the potential disadvantages of unionization prior to making the decision on whether or not to join a union.
When EFCA was defeated with bipartisan opposition in 2008, CDW turned its focus to combating regulatory overreach by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). In the past few years, appointees to the NLRB have tried to enact the goals of EFCA through decisions, regulations and other actions. The Board has issued countless rules and decisions that have contradicted decades of well-established precedent and upended labor relations in what appears to be an all out effort to increase the number of dues-paying union members without regard to the negative impact the agency’s actions will have on employees, employers and the economy. The NLRB’s efforts have included attempts to: limit employees access to information about disadvantages of unionization through “ambush” elections; allow unions to access workers’ personal information and violate businesses’ property rights; disenfranchise employees who oppose unionization by allowing union organizers to gerrymander bargaining units; and attack opportunities for small business franchisees, vendors, and subcontractors, because these businesses do not provide the same economies of scale for union organizing as larger businesses. CDW continues to fight against these attacks on workers and businesses and limit the expansive overreach of the NLRB and similar agencies.