Overlawyered » labor unions http://overlawyered.com Chronicling the high cost of our legal system Thu, 23 Oct 2014 17:28:41 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 In Fairfax police shooting, still no word http://overlawyered.com/2014/10/fairfax-police-shooting-still-word/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/10/fairfax-police-shooting-still-word/#comments Sat, 18 Oct 2014 11:25:02 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=48934 It’s been more than a year since police shot John Geer, and the Fairfax department still won’t release the name of the officer who killed him. This has all been happening in the national media’s own backyard, the suburbs of Washington, D.C. [Robert McCartney, WaPo] In Ferguson, Mo., a delay of several days in releasing […]

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It’s been more than a year since police shot John Geer, and the Fairfax department still won’t release the name of the officer who killed him. This has all been happening in the national media’s own backyard, the suburbs of Washington, D.C. [Robert McCartney, WaPo] In Ferguson, Mo., a delay of several days in releasing the name of the officer who shot Michael Brown was among the grievances that set off protests and confrontations that made world news; yielding to pressure from police associations and unions, many departments have adopted policies against releasing the names of officers involved in shootings either for an initial period or even indefinitely while an investigation remains open. Writes Alexander R. Cohen: “We’ve seen more patriotism from the people of Ferguson than from the people of Fairfax on this issue.”

P.S. Also, from Slate Star Codex, how Ferguson turned into a Referendum on Everything.

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Labor and employment roundup http://overlawyered.com/2014/10/labor-employment-roundup-34/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/10/labor-employment-roundup-34/#comments Mon, 13 Oct 2014 04:05:21 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=48549 EEOC investigating claim that personality tests for job applicants discriminate against mentally ill [ABA Journal] Many “living wage” ordinances contain a sneaky provision that encourages unionization [Maxford Nelsen, WSJ] Sixth Circuit agrees to rehear case suggesting employees can demand telecommuting as accommodation [Jon Hyman, earlier; EEOC v. Ford Motor] Should employers give informative references? [Daniel […]

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  • EEOC investigating claim that personality tests for job applicants discriminate against mentally ill [ABA Journal]
  • Many “living wage” ordinances contain a sneaky provision that encourages unionization [Maxford Nelsen, WSJ]
  • Sixth Circuit agrees to rehear case suggesting employees can demand telecommuting as accommodation [Jon Hyman, earlier; EEOC v. Ford Motor]
  • Should employers give informative references? [Daniel Schwartz, Evil HR Lady]
  • EEOC will abuse conciliation process unless judges exercise oversight [Merrily Archer]
  • Here is how Politico proposes to cover labor issues as “straight news right down the middle” [The Weekly Standard, RiShawn Biddle/Rare]
  • Study: extended jobless benefits prolonged labor market’s woes [Karahan, Kapon, Satar, New York Fed via Tuccille]
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    Police roundup http://overlawyered.com/2014/09/police-militarization-roundup-2/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/09/police-militarization-roundup-2/#comments Thu, 04 Sep 2014 04:05:04 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=47875 Spectacular investigative report from Radley Balko on fines, fees, and revenue-driven law enforcement in the towns north of St. Louis [WaPo] Reading it, I’m pretty confident my two cents a couple of weeks ago was on the right track; Talk about wrong turns: some self-styled progressives want to seize the moment to extend federal government […]

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  • Spectacular investigative report from Radley Balko on fines, fees, and revenue-driven law enforcement in the towns north of St. Louis [WaPo] Reading it, I’m pretty confident my two cents a couple of weeks ago was on the right track;
  • Talk about wrong turns: some self-styled progressives want to seize the moment to extend federal government control further over local police management [BuzzFeed, Scott Greenfield ("czar" idea)]
  • More reporting on how we got police militarization [ProPublica, Newsweek]
  • Race, police, and political power in Ferguson [Charles Cobb guest-posting at Volokh] Richard Epstein on not jumping to factual conclusions (link fixed now);
  • N.Z.: “Police union’s election year wishlist” [Radio New Zealand (via @EricCrampton who comments: "Short version: any restriction on liberty that makes their job easier"); yesterday's post]
  • Pretextual pot busts? Zimring’s curious defense of NYC “broken windows” policing [NYP]
  • Yes, there’s a SWAT lobby in Washington, D.C., behaving as you’d expect [Tim Mak, Daily Beast] “If Democrats Seek to ‘Rally Blacks’ Against Police Militarization, They Might Start with the Congressional Black Caucus” [Nick Gillespie; Zaid Jilani, Vanity Fair]
  • “Police Officers and Patents of Nobility” [Coyote] “Man shot, paralyzed over unpaid parking tickets” [Balko; Lehigh County, Pa.]
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    Police unions and excessive force http://overlawyered.com/2014/09/toward-curbing-excessive-force-policing/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/09/toward-curbing-excessive-force-policing/#comments Wed, 03 Sep 2014 12:49:09 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=48012 The need for police forces isn’t going away, so what practical suggestions do libertarians have in the here and now for discouraging police resort to excessive force? Thanks to Ed Krayewski at Reason for quoting me on the subject of tackling the power of police unions, which not only protect bad actors from removal but […]

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    The need for police forces isn’t going away, so what practical suggestions do libertarians have in the here and now for discouraging police resort to excessive force? Thanks to Ed Krayewski at Reason for quoting me on the subject of tackling the power of police unions, which not only protect bad actors from removal but tie the hands of well-intentioned administrators in a dozen other ways and exert political pressure against effective reform. (Other suggestions in the piece: increase use of body- and dash-cams, extend the role of civilian oversight boards, and end the Drug War; relatedly, curtail SWAT tactics and the use of other paramilitary force.)

    On a perhaps not unrelated note, the Washington Post reports today on the police shooting of an unarmed suburban Washington, D.C. man in his front doorway after he refused to let police into his home following a domestic call. The fact that jumped out at me was that, a year after it happened, the Fairfax County police department is still releasing no information about the incident, not even the name of the officer who pulled the trigger. According to the Post’s account (related lawsuit), police shot kitchen contractor John Geer once but first aid did not arrive until an hour later — he bled to death — and his body remained unmoved for hours, like that of Michael Brown on the street in Ferguson, Mo. The Fairfax chief says his department is just following its own policy by not releasing the officer’s name or other information while an investigation is pending (and pending and pending) — but how that policy came to be adopted, and for whose benefit, are questions worth asking.

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    Labor roundup http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/labor-roundup-3/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/labor-roundup-3/#comments Thu, 28 Aug 2014 04:05:35 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=47896 What’s wrong with the NLRB attack on McDonald’s franchising, cont’d [On Labor, earlier here, etc.] Postal union calls in American Federation of Teachers, other public employee unions to kill Staples postal partnership plan [Huffington Post] U.S. Department of Labor uses coercive hot-goods orders to arm-twist blueberry farmers, judges say no [Jared Meyer, Econ21 and Salem […]

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  • What’s wrong with the NLRB attack on McDonald’s franchising, cont’d [On Labor, earlier here, etc.]
  • Postal union calls in American Federation of Teachers, other public employee unions to kill Staples postal partnership plan [Huffington Post]
  • U.S. Department of Labor uses coercive hot-goods orders to arm-twist blueberry farmers, judges say no [Jared Meyer, Econ21 and Salem Statesman-Journal]
  • “Watch Closely Obama’s Treatment of Unions” [Diana Furchtgott-Roth] “Obama ‘Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces’ Executive Order Will Punish Firms in Pro-Worker States” [Hans Bader, CEI]
  • Judge: massive document request signals NLRB’s emergence as litigation arm, and co-organizer, of unions [Sean Higgins, Examiner] Wobblies on top: NLRB sides with IWW workers over poster claiming eatery’s food was unsafe [Minneapolis Star-Tribune, earlier]
  • Academic debate on union issues already wildly lopsided, union-backed labor history curriculum unlikely to help [Alex Bolt, Workplace Choice]
  • Turning unionism into a protected-class category in parallel with discrimination law is one of the worst ideas ever [Jon Hyman, earlier here, etc.]
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    Boston attack on Padma Lakshmi and crew http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/boston-attack-padma-lakshmi-crew/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/boston-attack-padma-lakshmi-crew/#comments Fri, 22 Aug 2014 13:58:26 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=47764 If done by anyone other than unionists, this would by now be a trending national story: The Teamsters picketers were already mad. By the time Top Chef host Padma Lakshmi’s car pulled up to the Steel & Rye restaurant in the picturesque New England town of Milton just outside Boston, one of them ran up […]

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    If done by anyone other than unionists, this would by now be a trending national story:

    The Teamsters picketers were already mad. By the time Top Chef host Padma Lakshmi’s car pulled up to the Steel & Rye restaurant in the picturesque New England town of Milton just outside Boston, one of them ran up to her car and screamed, “We’re gonna bash that pretty face in, you f*cking wh*re!”

    “She was scared,” said a Top Chef crewmember who witnessed the incident.

    Bravo had incurred the wrath of Charlestown-based Teamsters Local 25 by using its own production assistants as drivers, reports the Boston Herald:

    The picketers lobbed sexist, racist and homophobic slurs at the rest of the cast and crew for most of the day, the website reported, and when production wrapped, the “Top Chef” crew found that tires were slashed on 14 of their cars. Milton police confirmed that the union members were “threatening, heckling and harassing” but said no arrests were made.

    The Herald quotes a spokeswoman for Local 25, Melissa Hurley, sounding completely unapologetic: “As far as we’re concerned, nothing happened.” Or to put it differently: Teamsters Will Be Teamsters.

    More, including the violent history that makes this incident anything but “isolated,” from the Boston Globe. I’ve posted on the curious exemption of unions from the law of harassment, stalking, hostile environment, etc. here, here (more on Philadelphia Quaker meetinghouse arson), and in various other posts, as well as in my book The Excuse Factory.

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    “Police unions produce rules that protect bad actors” http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/police-unions-produce-rules-protect-bad-actors/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/police-unions-produce-rules-protect-bad-actors/#comments Sun, 17 Aug 2014 13:35:18 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=47646 A timely reminder [Ed Krayewski, Reason] Appallingly, some unions have won provisions forbidding authorities from interviewing an officer charged with misconduct until days after an incident, which means a lawyered-up officer can, if so inclined, hold back from committing to a story until it becomes clearer what story is convenient. Krayewski: Whether Ferguson’s police chief […]

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    A timely reminder [Ed Krayewski, Reason] Appallingly, some unions have won provisions forbidding authorities from interviewing an officer charged with misconduct until days after an incident, which means a lawyered-up officer can, if so inclined, hold back from committing to a story until it becomes clearer what story is convenient. Krayewski:

    Whether Ferguson’s police chief or mayor are actually interested in firing this cop is hardly known. But in the current situation, their hands are tied by an intricate system of legal protections built for cops around the country. Firing Michael Brown’s killer would not make him guilty of murder. That’s what jury trials are for in this free country. But cops, who are authorized by the government to use violence to attain their goals, ought to be held to a higher standard than everyday criminals, not lower ones. A job is a privilege, not a right.

    We’ve run many items over the years on this theme, including: Connecticut officer reinstated with back pay after “covering up a hit and run crash involving a fellow officer [she] was involved in a relationship with,” and police union “defends Denver cop fired for driving drunk at 143 mph”; union saves job of officer who planted white powder on suspect in a drug arrest, also in Connecticut; the comprehensively bad “Law Enforcement Officer’s Bill of Rights” package enacted in many states; etc. And closely related, from Ken White at Popehat: “Don’t Give Special Rights To Anybody! Oh, Except Cops. That’s Cool”; J.D. Tuccille, Reason.

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    Labor and employment roundup http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/labor-employment-roundup-30/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/labor-employment-roundup-30/#comments Thu, 07 Aug 2014 04:05:06 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=47281 “The tie that binds public employee unions and Wall Street” [Daniel DiSalvo] “Unions Manipulate New York City’s Public Pension Funds To Punish Their Enemies” [NYT via Jim Epstein, Reason] Illinois latest state to pass “ban the box” law restricting employers’ inquiries on criminal records [Workplace Prof] Two ex-football pros file suit claiming union conspired with […]

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  • “The tie that binds public employee unions and Wall Street” [Daniel DiSalvo] “Unions Manipulate New York City’s Public Pension Funds To Punish Their Enemies” [NYT via Jim Epstein, Reason]
  • Illinois latest state to pass “ban the box” law restricting employers’ inquiries on criminal records [Workplace Prof]
  • Two ex-football pros file suit claiming union conspired with owners on concussions [Bloomberg]
  • Average Illinois public retiree’s pension rapidly narrowing gap with average salary of worker still on job [Jake Griffin Daily Herald via Reboot Illinois] By 2006, 1,600 California prison guards were making $110K+, plus more on tendency of state/local government pay to outrun private [Lee Ohanian via Tyler Cowen]
  • Great moments in employment law: Seventh Circuit says other employees’ having sex on complainant’s desk not hostile work environment when not targeted at gender [Eric B. Meyer]
  • Next step signaled in SEIU fast food protest campaign: unlawful property occupations [AP, Chicago Tribune, arrests in May]
  • Trial lawyer win: Obama federal-contractor fiat will forbid pre-dispute agreements to submit bias claims to binding arbitration [AP, AAJ jubilates]
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    Labor and employment roundup http://overlawyered.com/2014/07/labor-employment-roundup-29/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/07/labor-employment-roundup-29/#comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 04:05:58 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=47107 “Telling Employee He Is ‘Eligible’ For Bonus Not Enough to Create Contractual Obligation” [Chris Parkin/Daniel Schwartz; Connecticut appeals court] Richard Epstein on Obama’s anti-LGBT-discrimination edict for federal contractors [Hoover "Defining Ideas"] D.C. Circuit panel, Janice Rogers Brown writing, strikes down DC tour guide licensing scheme [Ilya Shapiro/Cato, WaPo, Orin Kerr] “Why Progressives Shouldn’t Support Public […]

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  • “Telling Employee He Is ‘Eligible’ For Bonus Not Enough to Create Contractual Obligation” [Chris Parkin/Daniel Schwartz; Connecticut appeals court]
  • Richard Epstein on Obama’s anti-LGBT-discrimination edict for federal contractors [Hoover "Defining Ideas"]
  • D.C. Circuit panel, Janice Rogers Brown writing, strikes down DC tour guide licensing scheme [Ilya Shapiro/Cato, WaPo, Orin Kerr]
  • “Why Progressives Shouldn’t Support Public Workers Unions” [Dmitri Mehlhorn/Daily Beast]
  • “James Sherk of Heritage on Members-Only Bargaining” [On Labor]
  • As discrimination law gradually swallows all else: “Rep. Keith Ellison wants to make union organizing a civil right” [MSNBC]
  • NY Senate committee gives approval to “workplace bullying” law. On thin constitutional ice? [Hans Bader/CEI, earlier]
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    Labor roundup http://overlawyered.com/2014/07/labor-roundup-2/ http://overlawyered.com/2014/07/labor-roundup-2/#comments Fri, 11 Jul 2014 04:05:48 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46676 California tenure lawsuit exposes rift between Democratic establishment and teachers’ union [Sean Higgins, Washington Examiner] NLRB pushing new interpretation to sweep much outsourcing into “joint employment” for labor law purposes [Marilyn Pearson, Inside Counsel] Restaurant “worker centers” campaign against tipping. Perhaps a sign their interests not fully aligned with waitstaffs’? [Ryan Williams, DC] NLRB’s edict […]

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  • California tenure lawsuit exposes rift between Democratic establishment and teachers’ union [Sean Higgins, Washington Examiner]
  • NLRB pushing new interpretation to sweep much outsourcing into “joint employment” for labor law purposes [Marilyn Pearson, Inside Counsel]
  • Restaurant “worker centers” campaign against tipping. Perhaps a sign their interests not fully aligned with waitstaffs’? [Ryan Williams, DC]
  • NLRB’s edict against non-union employers’ confidentiality policies emblematic of its activist stance lately [Karen Michael, Times-Dispatch]
  • Three public sector unions spent $4.3 million on Connecticut state political activities in 2011-2013 cycle [Suzanne Bates, Raising Hale]
  • Sen. Lindsey Graham prepares funding rider to block NLRB “micro-union” recognition [Fred Wszolek, background]
  • “Table Dance Manager” glitch alleged: “Exotic dancers + allegedly malfunctioning software = Fair Labor lawsuit” [Texas Lawyer]
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