Kansas hospital appeals ruling that it violated nurses' rights to representation
The nurses made the request for a union representative before appearing in front of the nursing peer review committee. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit heard oral arguments in the case Jan. 18.
According to an article published by the American Hospital Association, the NLRB rejected the contention of Menorah Medical Center that allowing union representatives to accompany employees during the peer review meetings would interfere with employer objectives and instead found that employees “reasonably believed that discipline was a possible outcome when they appeared before the [committee].”
The hospital, in NLRB’s ruling, then violated the law by denying requests for union representatives and yet still continuing with the interviews.
Although the hospital argued that providing requested information to the union would have been a breach of confidentiality that is protected by state law privilege, the NRLB said the hospital “failed to establish a legitimate and substantial confidentiality interest in any of the requested information.”
The ruling of the National Labor Relations Board was in conflict with a brief filed in support of the hospital by the American Hospital Association, the Kansas Hospital Association, the Texas Hospital Association and the Texas Nurses Association. That friend-of-the-court brief was filed in February 2014.