17 Mem. St. U. L. Rev. 69 (1986-1987)
UAW-Hm Saturn Contract: Sweetheart Deal or Novel Labor-Management Agreement

handle is hein.journals/umem17 and id is 93 raw text is: UAW-GM Saturn Contract:
Sweetheart Deal or Novel Labor-
Management Agreement?*
The rights of employees to self-organization, to bargain col-
lectively through representatives of their own choosing, or to refrain
from such activity are basic principles of the National Labor Re-
lations Act (NLRA).1 Labor contracts that grant exclusive bar-
gaining status to a specific union prior to a majority of the
employees' selection of a bargaining agent denigrate these principles
and, consequently, are invalid as an unfair labor practice.2 In ad-
dition to running afoul of federal labor law, these contracts run
the risk of conflicting with state right-to-work laws.'
* The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect
the views of the editor or staff.
** Associate, Goodwin & Goodwin, Charleston, West Virginia. B.A., Youngstown
State University, 1983; J.D., The University of Akron, 1986. The author gratefully ac-
knowledges the assistance of Rossie D. Alston, Jr., counsel for the National Right to Work
1. Section 7 of the NLRA provides in part:
Employees shall have the right to self-organization, to form, join, or assist
labor organizations, to bargain collectively through representatives of their own
choosing, and to engage in other concerted activities for the purpose of col-
lective bargaining . . . and shall also have the right to refrain from any or
all of such activities ....
29 U.S.C. § 157 (1983).
2. In International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union v. NLRB, 366 U.S. 731, 737
(1961), the Supreme Court held invalid a labor contract that granted exclusive bargaining
status to a union having the support of only a minority of employees as a clear evisceration
of the employees' rights under the NLRA to freedom of choice and majority rule. See also
NLRB v. Pennsylvania Greyhound Lines, Inc., 303 U.S. 261 (1938); NLRB v. Haberman
Constr. Co., 618 F.2d 288 (5th Cir. 1980), rev'd on other grounds on rehearing, 641 F.2d
351 (5th Cir. 1981) (en banc).
3. Section 14(b) of the NLRA allows states, as a matter of local law, to make all
varieties of compulsory unionism illegal. 29 U.S.C. § 164(b) (1983). One author has noted
that section 14(b) appears to be an anomalous exception to an otherwise pervasive federal
preemption doctrine, a doctrine that nullifies most state laws purporting to regulate the
labor-management relationship. Haggard, Right-To-Work Laws in the Southern States, 59
N.C.L. REV. 29, 33 (1980).

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