Layoff rights

The director of our department presented a 22.5 person layoff proposal to our Board of Commissioners May 15. The Board chose to "stay" the issue until June 13. Since then, upper management has been promising to provide non-bargaining unit staff the information regarding bumping rights. Two weeks later we still have nothing. The layoff plan also was done by position, not senority. 26 people have been hired since 2004 and only 5 of then are included in the layoff plan. My questions are:
1. How long can they legally delay getting us the bumping rights information?
2. Do they have the right to abolish positions to get rid of the more senior, higher paid staff vs. those with less senority/lower pay?
3. We are being told their is a "line" between bargaining and non-bargaining positions relative to bumping rights. If there is no state law, and the union contract is silent on the issue, why can't non-bargaining positions bump into bargaining unit positions, particularly if they came up through all those positions to get to their non-bargaining position? Thanks

1 answer  |  asked May 30, 2008 02:18 AM [EST] in Unions  |  applies to Ohio

Answers (1)

Kelly Trautner
Union vs. At-will

Without responding to whether state law applies here, federal law does apply without question. And, without having read this specific collective bargaining agreement (CBA), my guess is the CBA actually does speak to this issue, though perhaps not specifically in the bumping provisions. If the CBA defines who is in the bargaining unit via some kind of recognition clause, it tells you who is working under that contract. If your position is not covered by that CBA, you are probably at-will and without any of the rights and protections spelled out in that Agreement, including seniority and bumping rights.

If the personnel policy of the employer provides some sort of seniority structure for non-bargaining unit employees, your employer is correct in telling you that there is "a line between bargaining and non-bargaining relative to bumping rights."

posted by Kelly Trautner  |  May 30, 2008 10:54 AM [EST]

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