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Thursday, May 28, 2020

Eugene Freedman, baseball scribe and labor lawyer, on unionizing the minor leagues

So why would this pose an impediment to organizing the minor leagues? “By the time you have an NLRB petition for an election, and then the election takes place, the majority of that legally created bargaining unit would no longer be the same people,” Freedman explained. That’s because the process of unionizing takes time - a long time. “The signing of cards to request an election, challenging individual voters, and then the election, that usually takes six months to a year,” Freedman said. Six months is an entire baseball season - so by the time the NLRB has said the minors can hold an election, players could have been promoted out of the minors, or dropped from affiliated baseball completely. “In that time, there could be 100% turnover at the lower levels of the minor leagues and 50% turnover even at the Double-A level,” Freedman said. “And that would allow the employers to challenge the legality of the union.”

In this way, a minor league baseball union could face challenges similar to the organization of another transitory industry. “Colleges are [doing this] to prevent organizing by teaching assistants and graduate assistants,” Freedman said. “And if you can delay an election for two years, it’s not the same people who signed the cards, and therefore the election is off.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 28, 2020 at 12:15 PM | 0 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: labor, minor league

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