By COLIN STAUB
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) will consider unfair labor practice charges against Saint Alphonsus Medical Group before counting ballots in an election at an Ontario, Oregon hospital.
Hospital management earlier this year decided to withdraw union recognition from the Oregon Nurses Association (ONA). Management claimed a majority of Saint Alphonsus nurses didn’t want to be in the union anymore (although it didn’t offer proof). Managers stopped allowing union reps on the premises and threw out union literature, drawing unfair labor practice charges from ONA.
The union then filed for a representation election to demonstrate union support on the premises. Mail ballots are set to go out July 21 and be counted Aug. 11, but the NLRB has determined the activities alleged in the unfair labor practice charges are significant enough that they could impact the results. So, when the election happens, the NLRB will seal the ballots until it rules on the charges.