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The High Road to Section 7 Rights: The Law of Voluntary Recognition Agreements

By Brent Garren
May 01, 2005
Voluntary recognition agreements (“VRAs”), also known as “neutrality agreements” or “card check agreements” depending on their features, are an increasingly widespread and important aspect of America’s labor relations landscape. Unions are turning to VRAs with increasing frequency because of their enormous frustration at the weakness of the NLRB machinery to realize the promise of employees’ right to organize. The great majority of newly-organized members of my union, UNITE, which organizes very aggressively, come in through VRAs. Both opponents and proponents of VRAs agree that they produce a far higher rate of union success than the NLRB’s election process. VRAs are critical to the realization of employees’ right to organize in the 21st century....