Reprinted from McKnight’s by Emily Mongan on April 27, 2017.
A California skilled nursing facility that fired employees one week before a union election must reinstate them and compensate them with back pay, a National Labor Relations Board judge has ruled.
A complaint was brought against Novato Healthcare Center in Novato, California, by the National Union of Healthcare Workers, claiming the facility interrogated employees about their union sympathies before an election in October 2015. Novato officials eventually suspended and terminated five employees — four of whom were supportive of joining the union — days before the vote. An administrator for the facility testified that the firings were due to all five employees sleeping outside of their break times, jeopardizing resident safety.
In an opinion published last Thursday (April 20), NLRB Administrative Law Judge Amita Baman Tracy said that two administrators at the Brius-operated facility gave “vague” and “implausible” testimonies about what led to the employees’ terminations. Tracy also ruled that Novato discriminated against employees and interfered with their rights under the National Labor Relations Act. …