To: All BMRF/B&P Employees
The Company has been made aware of an employee-initiated effort to decertify the USW Local 13-243. As many rumors are circulating, we want to provide you answers to some employee questions we have received regarding decertification and withdrawal of recognition. At this time, the Company is only answering employee questions and providing general information.
What is Decertification?
- Under federal law, employees have the right to make their own choice about union representation in a secret ballot election conducted by a federal agency, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
- Employees trigger elections by filing a decertification petition with the NLRB. The petition must be signed by 30% or more of the represented workforce (which includes both dues paying and non-dues paying members).
- Employers may bypass these NLRB procedures and withdraw recognition of a Union with evidence that 50% or more of the represented workforce no longer support the Union.
- As of May 1, the USW Local 13-243 bargaining unit was comprised of 620 employees spread across the Beaumont Refinery and Lubricants Blending & Packaging Plant.
Who has the right to decertify a Union?
- Under the National Labor Relations Act, employees have the legally protected right to decertify a Union. This applies to all employees represented by the Union and not just those who pay membership dues. Employees also have the right to oppose decertification.
When can employees decertify?
- Because the contract is expired, employees can file a decertification petition any time before a new contract is reached.
What does it look like if employees decertify and become a non-represented site?
- The law prohibits the Company from making promises about what your pay and benefits would be if you decertify, and we will not do so. However, we are allowed to promise that we will not reduce current wages, reduce current benefits, or terminate represented employees as a result of an employee decision to decertify.
- Employees have asked about pay and benefits at other ExxonMobil non-represented sites. Again, we are not allowed to make promises, but, we can say that non-represented employees at comparable sites have rates ~5% – 7% higher and with similar benefits (example below).
|Top Rates||Beaumont Refinery||Beaumont Chemical Plant|
- The above example illustrates the delta in the Refinery’s top rates in the Assistant Operator and Mechanical Specialist job classifications against the Chemical Plant’s top rates in the comparable Process Technician and Mechanical Technician job classifications.
Will the Union be informed if an employee signs a petition to decertify the Union?
- The NLRB will not tell the Union who has signed a petition to decertify a union.
Can the Company hire contractors to permanently replace locked out employees if they chose to decertify?
- No. Although an employer can continue to operate with temporary employees, contractors, and workers from other facilities, the employers cannot hire permanent replacements. All employees must be returned to work when the lockout ends, regardless of whether it ends due to the ratification of a new agreement or to the decertification of the workforce.
We respect the rights of our employees in this process regardless of their views. We are committed to providing information and answering any questions employees may have so that they can make an informed decision. If you have any further questions regarding decertification, you may send your inquiries to Beaumont.Area.HR@exxonmobil.com. You can also go to www.NLRB.gov.