17 Duq. L. Rev. 755 (1978-1979)
The Right to Strike for Pennsylvania's Public Employees - Its Scope, Limits and Ramifications for the Public Employer

handle is hein.journals/duqu17 and id is 783 raw text is: The Right to Strike for Pennsylvania's Public
Employees-Its Scope, Limits, and Ramifications for
the Public Employer
Kurt H. Decker*
During the last decade many changes in the governmental process
have occurred, not the least of which has been the introduction of
public sector collective bargaining. The procedure of collective bar-
gaining is not new. What is new, however, is that formal collective
bargaining negotiations have now become an integral part of public
sector employment. No longer are public employees isolated indi-
viduals dealing with employers. Increasingly, public employers con-
front employees united in an organization and deal with those em-
ployees through a new set of relationships circumscribed by collec-
tive bargaining.
It is essential in understanding public sector collective bargaining
to recognize the context in which it exists in the private and public
sectors. The early 1930's witnessed a period of labor unrest charac-
terized by strikes, work stoppages, and slowdowns which threatened
to close industries. To counteract this unrest, Congress passed the
National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).I Since the NLRA's passage,
private sector employees have been accorded organization and bar-
gaining rights with their employers on wages, hours, and other
terms and conditions of employment.2 By 1937, Pennsylvania
labor's right to collectively bargain was generally protected by fed-
eral legislation in the NLRA, and by state legislation in the Pennsyl-
vania Labor Relations Act (PLRA).3 Public employees, however,
* B.A., Thiel College; M.P.A., Pennsylvania State University; J.D., Vanderbilt University;
Ass't Att'y General, Pennsylvania Governor's Office, Bureau of Labor Relations; Member,
Pennsylvania Bar. The views expressed herein are those of the author and not necessarily
those of the Pennsylvania Governor's Office, Bureau of Labor Relations.
1. National Labor Relations (Wagner) Act, 29 U.S.C.  151-69 (1970).
2. Id.  152(2).
3. The Act of June 1, 1937, Pub. L. No. 294 (Pennsylvania Labor Relations Act), estab-
lished rights for private sector employees in Pennsylvania to organize and bargain collectively
through selected representatives. PA. STAT. ANN. tit. 43,  211.1-.13 (Purdon 1964 & Supp.
1977-78) [hereinafter referred to as PLRA].

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