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03/11/2021

Independent Grocers Decry House Passage of PRO Act

Legislation would infringe worker, employer rights, according to NGA
Bridget Goldschmidt
Managing Editor
Bridget Goldschmidt profile picture
Independent Grocers Decry House Passage of PRO Act Labor Relations
According to NGA, the PRO Act denies employers’ right to free speech and advice of counsel while compromising employees’ right to privacy.

The National Grocers Association (NGA), the trade organization representing the independent supermarket sector, admitted that it was disappointed by the U.S. House of Representatives’ recent vote to pass the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act, but vowed to continue its fight against the bill in the Senate.

“The PRO Act overturns decades of U.S. labor policy and awards Big Labor a lopsided advantage against entrepreneurial businesses,” explained Greg Ferrara, president and CEO of Washington, D.C.-based NGA. “Adoption of the act into law would severely infringe the rights of workers as well as their employers, including America’s independent grocers, whose tireless efforts drive local economic growth and create jobs within their communities.” 

The PRO Act would eliminate right-to-work laws in 27 states, limit work for independent contractors, remove secret ballot protections for union elections, require employers to give sensitive employee records to unions, and limit employers’ right to counsel during union elections, among other significant changes to long-established employment law, according to NGA.

The organization’s grass-roots campaign against the PRO Act has to date mobilized at least 100 of its member companies to contact their representatives in Congress to urge them to vote against the legislation. 

“This undemocratic bill denies employers’ right to free speech and advice of counsel while compromising employees’ right to privacy,” added Ferrara. “Legislation such as the PRO Act deals a crushing blow to workers’ rights and economic growth at a pivotal time for this nation, which continues to grapple with the impact of the pandemic.”