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National Labor Relations Board v. Lorben Corp.

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
345 P.2d 346 (1965)


A union began organizing Lorben Corp.’s (defendant’s) plant and had obtained the support of four out of 25 or 26 employees when Lorben fired one. Believing Lorben discharged the employee for engaging in union activities, the union decided on a strike and began picketing the plant. The employee asked Lorben’s president if he wanted to talk with the union officials, but the president declined. Instead, on an attorney’s advice, the president prepared a paper asking, “Do you wish [the union] to represent you?” with two columns marked “yes” or “no.” The superintendent presented the sheet to each employee throughout the plant, explaining that the employee was free to sign or not, but every employee signed the “no” column. The union filed objections, and an examiner found that Lorben had violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) affirmed the examiner’s decision, but only on the ground that Lorben failed to advise employees of the interrogation’s purpose or assure them that no retaliation would follow. Lorben appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Marshall, J.)

Dissent (Friendly, J.)

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