Irem Adopts New Statements of Policy on the Employee Free Choice Act and Tenant Protection in Property Foreclosures

Article excerpt

IREM recently approved two new statements of policy in response to legislation currently being considered by Congress that would impact the commercial real estate industry: the Employee Free Choice Act and Multi-Family Housing Foreclosures.

Employee Free Choice Act

The Employee Free Choice Act, also known as "check card" legislation, would fundamentally change the process for union elections and the collective bargaining process, making it easier for labor unions to organize employees into unions. As proposed, the Employee Free Choice Act would require the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to certify union representation when a majority of employees sign a card favoring a union. The NLRB would not be required to conduct a private election. The bill also would impose a strict 90-day time limit for reaching an initial collective bargaining agreement. Additionally, if an agreement is not met during this time, either party can request mediation from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS). Following mediation, the legislation permits the FMCS to impose a 2-year binding contract on employers and employees. Neither party may appeal.

IREM urges Congress to oppose the Employee Free Choice Act. IREM supports the right of employees to choose whether to be represented by a labor union through a federally supervised private election. A secret ballot election ensures that employees are protected from coercion and intimidation.

Tenant Protection in Property Foreclosures

Legislation has been introduced to protect tenants and ensure they are not evicted without notice in the case of a property foreclosure. As home foreclosures continue to grow, tenants are being evicted from their rental homes, often with no advance notice of the action. …