Union Unfair Labor Practices

Section 7116(b) of the
Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) defines those actions which, if taken by the union, would result in a ULP. Many of these are identical to the sections which define management ULP's. The Statute provides that it is an unfair labor practice for the union to:

  1. interfere with, restrain, or coerce any employee in the exercise by the employee of any right under this chapter;

    -- this is the same as management's charge. Neither management nor the union can interfere with employees' rights under the Statute.

  2. cause or attempt to cause an agency to discriminate against any employee in the exercise by the employee of any right under this chapter;

    -- you won't see this too frequently. Here, the union would request that management take some action against an employee because he or she took some action under the Statute.

  3. coerce, discipline, fine, or attempt to coerce a member of the labor organization as punishment, reprisal, or for the purpose of hindering or impeding the member's work performance or productivity as an employee or the discharge of the members duties as an employee;

    -- pretty straight forward but, again, not something seen very frequently

  4. discriminate against an employee with regard to the terms of conditions of membership in the labor organization on the basis of race, color, creed, national origin, sex, age, preferential or nonpreferential civil service status, political affiliation, marital status, or handicapping condition;

    -- this is an internal union charge where someone was denied union membership because of non-merit reasons

  5. refuse to consult or negotiate in good faith with a labor organization as required by this chapter;

    -- this is the same charge as in the management ULP section; the union must bargain in good faith

  6. fail or refuse to cooperate in impasse procedures and impasse decisions as required by this chapter;

    -- again, this is the same requirement as in management's ULP section

  7. to call, or participate in, a strike, work stoppage, or slowdown, or picketing of an agency in a labor-management dispute if such picketing interferes with an agency's operations, or

    -- now this one's a little more interesting. Unions cannot participate in, nor call for, a strike. In fact, once notified of the possibility of a strike, work stoppage or slowdown, the union must take positive steps to avoid any such activity by bargaining unit members. On the other hand, the union and employees can engage in informational picketing so long as it does not interfere with the agency's operations. Employees cannot engage in informational picketing while on duty time. They can do so while at lunch, on leave or before or after work.

  8. otherwise fail or refuse to comply with any provision of this chapter.

    -- the same general catch-all as in management's ULP section.

Content last reviewed: 11/15/2016-DAH