NLRB Chair Signals That Change Is Imminent

National Labor Relations Board Chairwomen Lauren McFerran appeared at a virtual discussion hosted by Cornell University earlier this week. During the discussion, Chairwoman McFerran expressed her view that the NLRB has moved in the wrong direction over the last four years under the Republican controlled Board. Chairwoman McFerran stated:

“If I had to characterize the impact of the Trump board in a nutshell, it would be to say that this Board’s work has made the act smaller, both in terms of its coverage and in terms of the scope of the activity that it protects.”

Chairwoman McFerran went on to express that she would like to reverse a number of recent decisions covering topics involving the classification of workers as independent contractors and employee access to company email for union purposes.

The NLRB is comprised of five members appointed by the President (and confirmed by the senate). Currently, the Board is comprised of three Republican members, one Democratic member (Chairwoman McFerran) and one vacancy. President Biden can immediately nominate a Democrat to the vacant seat. However, he will need to wait until August for Board member William Emanuel’s term to expire to gain control of the NLRB and begin to reverse any recent decisions.