Thursday, February 5, 2015

NLRB Remands Decisions on 3 Catholic Colleges

Inside Higher Ed
February 5th, 2015

The National Labor Relations Board issued three decisions Wednesday regarding religious colleges where faculty members have attempted to form unions and where administrators have objected, saying that their spiritual affiliation puts them outside of the board’s jurisdiction. In each decision -- regarding Seattle University, Saint Xavier University and Manhattan College, all of which are Roman Catholic -- the board remanded the case back to the NLRB regional directors to take appropriate action in light of the recent NLRB decision regarding Pacific Lutheran University.
In that case -- which many called a major win for unions and a blow to longstanding legal precedents challenging the right of tenure-line faculty members at private institutions and faculty members generally at religious institutions to freely form unions -- the board said adjuncts at Pacific Lutheran could form a union affiliated with Service Employees International Union. The board based its decision on its opinion that adjuncts at Pacific Lutheran didn't perform specific religious functions that might cause them to fall outside its jurisdiction and on the opinion that the faculty members lacked the managerial duties that might prevent them from forming a union.

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