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Workers at Macy’s store in Massachusetts can unionize

New York – The National Labor Relations Board has issued a ruling that workers in the cosmetics and fragrances department in a Macy’s store located in Saugus, Massachusetts, have the right to attempt to unionize. The 3-1 ruling sided with the United Food and Commercial Workers union and said the 41 Macy’s employees form a community of interest.

The Retail Litigation Center (RLC) issued the following statement in response to the decision.

“The decision from the NLRB abandons longstanding legal precedent for retail store bargaining unit determinations in favor of an illogical and circular analysis intended to tilt the balance at the expense of the overall harmony and unity of a retail store’s full employee complement,” said RLC president Deborah White. “Nothing in this case justified a departure from a half-century’s worth of precedent that consistently recognized a presumption in the retail context in favor of the whole-store unit. These labor practices are fundamentally at odds with the needs of the retail industry and the expectations of American consumers.”

The National Retail Federation, which filed an amicus brief in the Macy's case, said the ruling was improper and accused the board of overstepping its bounds to advocate for unions.

"Recognizing individual groups of employees that work in the same store as unique bargaining units is nonsensical and impractical," said David French, senior VP of government relations, NRF, in a statement to the Wall Street Journal.  

© 2014