Want to buy your shoes from a union? Sounds a bit off, but it seems as though unionized shoe departments are in style these days – at least according to the National Labor Relations Board. Welcome to the world of micro unions, where Big Labor gets to pick and choose a handful of select members of a workplace and unionize them. Thanks to the unelected government bureaucrats on the NLRB, this perversion of our labor laws is now perfectly legal.
Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA) recently denounced it on C-SPAN, highlighting a recent example of unionization “run amok” at the shoe department of retailer Bergdorf Goodman.
“We’ve had settled labor law in the United States for 80 years,” argued Sen. Isakson. “If we start organizing micro-unions then you’ll have [both] an inability to cross-train workers and work stoppages.”
While micro unions are a great deal for union bosses, they are a bad deal for everyone else. If you’re a worker in this shoe department micro union, forget about ever moving to another part of the store. Forget about learning about the rest of the store’s business, knowledge you would need to move into management. If you’re in the shoe department union, you’re staying in the shoe department.
And if you’re an employer, just imagine having to deal with unions representing a few workers in this department and a few workers in that department. Imagine the differing pay scales; the unique rules pertaining to breaks that each department negotiates; and the hassle of administering a variety of different benefit packages. It’s a bookkeeping nightmare that can put any employer out of business.
How far will Big Labor go to line its own pockets while hurting the rest of us? And how far will the NLRB go help them do it?