Department of Labor, Office of Labor Management Standards
The DOL's Office of Labor Management Standards (OLMS) has been advancing a proposal commonly referred to as the “Persuader Rule” which would require employers to disclose to DOL any arrangements they have with consultants to address employee unionization efforts or collective bargaining. Under the proposed rule, virtually all interaction with labor lawyers and consultants – and potentially trade associations that provide guidance to members on labor policy – would be subject to the disclosure requirements.
In March of 2014, final action on the “Persuader Rule” was removed from DOL’s regulatory agenda and a new date for finalization has not been set. Along with 53 other associations, IEC had urged DOL to delay action on the rule.
Coupled with a recent proposal by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to speed up union elections, employers could find themselves severely constrained in their ability to respond to organizing efforts at their workplace and in communicating with their employees. IEC will continue to monitor the progression of the rule and engage Congress, DOL, and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) – which vets rules before they are finalized – on the profoundly negative impact this rule could have for employers and the advice they are able to seek on collective bargaining issues.