After a series of back and forth decisions between the California Agriculture Labor Relations Board (ALRB) and one of its district offices, the ALRB main office approved a request granting Gerawan farm workers the opportunity to hold an election today to determine if they want to forego representation by the United Farm Workers (UFW). The landmark decision and today’s historic election has the potential to affect many other workers who have never voted for UFW representation.
According to the Fresno Bee, the ALRB ruling, which overruled two earlier decisions by the ALRB’s district office, approved the request of Silvia Lopez, a Gerawan farm worker who filed the decertification election paperwork. Over twenty years ago, the UFW won the right to represent Gerawan workers; however, the UFW abandoned negotiations, leaving workers in representation limbo. That was until the UFW recently tried to assert itself after its twenty year hiatus, kicking up a dust storm with workers.
It is anticipated that the ALRB will impound ballots cast today until unfair labor allegations by the union and the employer have been resolved. Western Growers will continue to follow these developments and provide updates when they occur.
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