A College Football Players’ Union?

What will the NLRB do next…
APRIL, 2014

In case you haven’t heard, the NLRB has ruled that College Athletes are employees of the school and can form a union…

The Labor Board’s “entertainment” just keeps on coming. On March 26, 2014, in a decision that has wide-ranging implications for college and university athletics programs, the Regional Director for Region 13 of the National Labor Relations Board found that scholarship football players at Northwestern University are “employees” within the meaning of the National Labor Relations Act, and therefore eligible for union representation. The Regional Director found appropriate a bargaining unit composed of “all football players receiving grant-in-aid football scholarship [sic] and not having exhausted their playing eligibility.”

Nope. It’s no joke.

Obviously, the decision has the potential of drastically changing the landscape of college athletics. All employers, not just universities, need to understand there is a full out attack on them. The NCAA must be very concerned because of this ruling and the way at which it was arrived:

The Regional Director used the common law definition of employee in making his decision. Under that test, a person is an employee if he performs a service for another, under a contract of hire, for compensation, and is subject to the other’s right of control. He found the following:

• The scholarship football players perform a service (playing football) for compensation (a scholarship)

• The scholarship players' commitments to play football in exchange for the scholarship constitutes a contract for hire

• The scholarship players are under the control of the University for the entire year, including in-season and out-of-season workouts, restrictions on their entire personal life and detailed regulations players must follow at the risk of losing their scholarship

Does that mean that if a player breaks team rules the union, not the coach, will determine if that player is eligible to play? It’s just a thought.

More immediately, you have to wonder who’s next? Who’s going to have a curve ball thrown at them? Only time will tell. My best advice is the same as it’s always been. Communicate to your employees regularly. They will appreciate it, and you will be a more difficult target.

image   New Video for Management:
  Union Avoidance Strategies: Campaign

A Fortune 500 Company commissioned this video to be used as part of their training on union avoidance. They were tired of all the other videos they found on the subject so they challenged us to produce something new and out of the box. I think you’ll like it as much as they do…

Unions may be trying to gain a foothold in your business and you don’t even know it. You may not be ready to deal with a union campaign. You may think you’ll have time to get ready after a union petition is presented. With the prospect of radically shortened election cycles, a union campaign will hit you and your company like a full-bore military attack. There won’t be time to react. You must get ready now!

Ricardo Torres was a high-ranking union official who orchestrated hundreds of union organizing campaigns designed to force companies into submission under the thumb of various labor unions. The inside knowledge presented in this 18 minute video will shock and appall you when you hear about ruthless union tactics designed to ruin anyone personally who stands in their way. You could be on their list. Ricardo shares the best ways to deal with the union attacks in this video taken from hours of candid interviews with Ricardo. You can avoid unions with positive employee communications and Ricardo will give you some examples on how this can be accomplished.

The video is designed to be played in its entirety or by playing chapters over several weeks of regular meetings and discussions with managers and first line supervisors. To preview the entire video click here. For a short clip click here
If you would like to “challenge us” on a new video we would be glad to talk with you and see what we can work out. If you have a compelling message and want to be heard, we’d like to talk to you too.