Sixty seconds with...Michael Pepperman

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Michael Pepperman
Michael Pepperman
Q: The National Labor Relations Board and Department of Labor recently made moves that boldly favor labor. What do you foresee?

A: It's very similar to when the Employee Free Choice Act was out there. If I have to guess, many of these new rules will pass and it will become easier for unions to organize. Unions win 65% to 75% of elections held. If these pass, it will shoot up over 80%. This is big.

Q: Are long-term care operators still a big target?

A: Absolutely. Maybe the biggest. Healthcare has been one of the main targets of unions over the last five to 10 years. I think that trend will continue.

Q: What can providers do?

A: Step up the communication [with employees]. You can't lose an election that's not held. They should have an effective policy of educating workers on the benefits of remaining union-free.

Q: Is there a silver lining to any of this?

A: It's like a wake-up call to employers. The NLRB is making it easier for unions to organize, so you have to work harder if you want to remain union-free. Once that petition gets mailed to you as an employer, it gets a lot tougher [to stay union-free] and things speed up.

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