Temp Organizing Gets Big Boost from NLRB

Harris Freeman, Western New England University School of Law
George Gonos, Florida International University


Workers employed by temporary staffing agencies may find it easier to organize and bargain as the result of the National Labor Relations Board decision in the Browning-Ferris Industries (BFI) case. This Article described how the decision revamped the Board’s test for what is considered a “joint employer,” imposing new legal obligations on employers who hire through temp agencies and potentially also on giant corporate franchisors. Unions may now get access to these agreements at several points in the process of organizing: 1) in the context of proving joint employment, when the Board is determining the appropriate bargaining unit; 2) when seeking evidence to prove an unfair labor practice; and 3) through information requests in the course of collective bargaining.