Saturday, September 12, 2020
The Nationwide Labor Relations Board not too long ago cancelled a union election at a Las Vegas on line casino that suspended its operations and laid off workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic. In NP Texas LLC d/b/a Texas Station Playing Corridor and Lodge and Native Joint Govt Board of Las Vegas, 370 NLRB No. 11 (2020), the Board discovered that the Regional Director erred in scheduling the election on condition that the laid-off workers had no “cheap expectation of recall” and thus had been ineligible to vote.
Texas Station On line casino and the COVID-19 Pandemic
On March 18, 2020, the Governor of Nevada issued an emergency declaration directing that every one casinos stop operations till April 16. In accordance with the Governor’s order, Station Casinos knowledgeable its workers that it will be briefly closing its properties, together with Texas Station Playing Corridor and Lodge (the “Texas Station On line casino”). Though some supervisors on the Texas Station On line casino knowledgeable their subordinates in early March that they might probably be recalled in April or Could, the Governor twice prolonged its emergency order and all casinos remained closed.
On April 29, the Governor ordered gaming operations to stay closed via Could 15, and till the Nevada Gaming Management Board decided that operations may safely resume. On Could 1, Station Casinos despatched a letter to all of its workers outlining a reopening plan at its “Part One” properties. Based on the letter, all “Part Two” properties, together with the Texas Station On line casino, would stay closed. The letter additional said that whereas there could be workers reductions, Station Casinos was hopeful that it will be capable to “rehire lots of our valued crew members after we emerge on the opposite facet of the disaster.”
Every crew member individually obtained a communication with respect to his or her employment standing. The petitioned-for workers obtained termination letters, which indicated that their employment could be terminated as a result of the Texas Station On line casino “made the troublesome choice to briefly shut.”
Over the subsequent a number of weeks, the Governor issued extra emergency directives and the Texas Station On line casino remained closed. Nonetheless, the Texas Station On line casino displayed a marquee which learn, “STAY SAFE, WE’LL BE BACK!”, and its web site displayed a pop-up window indicating that whereas the on line casino was “briefly closed,” it “regarded ahead to opening quickly.”
On Could 28, 2020, the union filed a petition to characterize a unit of workers on the employer. On July 2, the Regional Director directed a mail-ballot election, reasoning that though the petitioned-for workers had been laid off, they’d an inexpensive expectation of recall. Amongst different issues, the Regional Director cited the Texas Station On line casino’s public statements (i.e., the marquee and representations of varied supervisors in early March) to assist his place.
The Board’s Determination
In an August 31 choice, the Board disagreed with the Regional Director’s reliance on “obscure and hopeful” statements by Station Casinos and dismissed the petition. Based on the Board, the employer had not indicated when (if ever) it will resume operations or recall workers, and laid-off workers couldn’t moderately depend on the representations of supervisors courting again to early March. Additional, as a result of the employer didn’t have any “previous observe” regarding layoffs of workers amid a pandemic, it couldn’t simply predict when it will be capable to resume operations and recall workers.
Provided that not one of the petitioned-for workers had an inexpensive expectation of recall, the Board decided that there have been no eligible voters who may vote in an election held within the foreseeable future. The Board due to this fact dismissed the petition, however indicated that the Petitioner may refile if and when the Texas Station On line casino resumes operations.
The Board’s choice right here illustrates the Board’s try to navigate the distinctive circumstances introduced by the COVID-19 pandemic. Board precedent is evident that staff who’re briefly laid off from their employment have a proper to type a union and will even vote in an election. Nonetheless, the Board’s choice in NP Texas LLC makes plain that staff affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, an unsure and repeatedly evolving state of affairs, want greater than “obscure and hopeful” statements by their employer to be able to have an inexpensive expectation of recall.
We are going to proceed to maintain you posted on the Board’s choices associated to the COVID-19 pandemic.
© 2020 Proskauer Rose LLP.