The Impact of Employer E-Mail Policies on Employee Rights to Engage in Concerted Activities Protected by the National Labor Relations Act

Labor-Management Relations, pp. 22-26, 2006

9 Pages Posted: 30 Oct 2009

See all articles by Christine Neylon O'Brien

Christine Neylon O'Brien

Boston College - Carroll School of Management

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: October 28, 2006

Abstract

This paper addresses the interrelationship of employee rights to engage in concerted activities under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and employer policies on e-mail use. Does an email policy of business-use-only avoid legal problems? Is such a policy practical in light of the pervasive use of e-mail for general communication? If employers permit selective personal use of the e-mail system, but prohibit discussion related to unions and issues related to wages, hours and working conditions, this is legally problematic. In addition, employer monitoring of e-mail is a form of surveillance that may be prohibited during a union organizational campaign. The existing case law interpreting like issues under the NLRA will be analyzed in light of new issues arising with e-mail in the workplace. Recommendations for appropriate resolution of the competing interests of employers, unions, and employees will be made.

Suggested Citation

O'Brien, Christine Neylon, The Impact of Employer E-Mail Policies on Employee Rights to Engage in Concerted Activities Protected by the National Labor Relations Act (October 28, 2006). Labor-Management Relations, pp. 22-26, 2006, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1495913

Christine Neylon O'Brien (Contact Author)

Boston College - Carroll School of Management ( email )

140 Commonwealth Avenue
Business Law Department
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
United States
(617) 552-0413 (Phone)
(617) 552-0414 (Fax)

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
23
Abstract Views
441
PlumX Metrics