Duty of Fair Representation

Union The National Labor Relations Act imposes upon unions, as exclusive

representative, a general duty to represent all members of the bargaining unit fairly.

In addition to the civil rights laws, the union violates its duty of fair representation

by discriminating on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability

or age when acting in it s representative capacity. The duty of fair representation

also requires that the union register its opposition to, and attempt to eradicate, any

discriminatory practices which come within the scope of its collective bargaining

agreement or negotiating powers. Duty of Fair Representation and Grievance

Processing A union must process a grievance lodged by a disabled, minority, female,

or older worker in the same manner or to the same extent as that of a non-disabled,

non-minority, male or younger worker. Although the union is not obligated to

process all grievances, it must make this determination in a fair, non-arbitrary and

good faith manner. Duty of Fair Representation also applies to Non-members Courts

have held that a union’s duty of fair representation applies to all employees in the

bargaining unit, including non-members.