23 April 2011
1. Define and discuss the term “collective bargaining.” Include and discuss [showing relevance or applicability] at least one reference found in our text, along with a current web-based news item/magazine article about a real life example of a collective bargaining action. Write a succinct and complete summary on the contents of the article you’ve provided along with your critical comments about that article. Support your findings with referenced research. (5 points)
Collective bargaining is a type of negotiation used by employees to work with their employers. During a collective bargaining period, workers' representatives approach the employer and attempt to negotiate a contract which both sides can agree upon. Typical issues covered in bargaining are compensation, personnel policies and procedures, employee rights and responsibilities, employer rights and responsibilities, union rights and responsibilities, and dispute resolution and ongoing decision making. Once both sides (upper management and union members) have reached a contract that they find agreeable, it is then known as the union contract or collective bargaining agreement.
Recently, the National Football League (NFL) has experienced issues with the players and the owners in regards to their collective bargaining agreement. In 1993, the original collective bargaining agreement was signed, setting a new standard for salary caps, free agency, and more than 15 years of labor peace in the NFL. The agreement stated that player’s salaries’ would be based on the revenue of the franchises’ success. Players have done quite well with this agreement with the median NFL salary equaling $790,000 a year in 2009. Franchises’ have also done considerably well with this agreement with the average franchise being worth $1.04 billion. So this has begged the questions of championship team players such as Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints and other NFL stars questioning, “Should a championship team player negotiate higher salaries than those that just do their job?” Currently the NFL owners are threatening to “lock out” the players next season. With no team, this means that the franchise owners will lose as well. This collective bargaining agreement was to be resolved by March 2011. Did this resolution happen?
In 2006, the current collective bargaining agreement was signed, stating an increase of 57.5 percent for the 2009 season. Many franchise owners are arguing that this increase did not benefit them. Currently, the only franchise that releases financial information to the public is the Green Bay Packers because the team is publically owned. Substantially earning teams such as the Washington Redskins and Dallas Cowboys financial information wasn’t released by the NFL, but limited data clearly shows that not only were the players, but the owners were successful in the 2006 extension of the original 1993 version of the collective bargaining agreement. In the Forbes magazine annual “Business of Football” article, the average franchise was worth $1.04 billion—with 19 to 32 franchises valued at over $1 billion.
In an April 2011 article, CNN.com reported that both sides (the NFL players and owners) presented their arguments and they are now awaiting a judge’s decision whether the lockout will be lifted. If the lockout is not lifted this will not only be a sad dilemma for football fans, but the workers that man these stadiums and ticket sellers. The New York Jets have already reached a decision that any “business side” employees will have to take a week of unpaid vacation each month until the lockout is lifted. References:
Budd, John W. Labor Relations: Striking a Balance. New York: McGraw-Hill/Irwin, 2005. (Budd 13).
NFLs Win-Win Labor Agreement
Hearing ends with no decision on NFL lockout...