Rule Orders Contractors to Post Notices of Labor Rights

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Federal contractors and subcontractors must post a notice informing employees of their rights under federal labor laws, according to an interim rule issued by the Defense Department, the General Services Administration, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and published in the Dec. 13 Federal Register (75 Fed. Reg. 77,723).

The interim rule will amend the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to implement Executive Order 13496, Notification of Employee Rights Under Federal Labor Laws (74 Fed. Reg. 6107; 27 HRR 117, 2/9/09). The Labor Department issued a final rule implementing the executive order May 20.

The interim rule took effect upon publication. The notice also invites comments, which will be due 60 days after publication.

The Labor Department's rule prescribed the contents of the notice, which is downloadable from DOL's website in an 11-inch by 17-inch poster that lists employees' rights under the National Labor Relations Act to form, join, and assist a union and to bargain collectively with their employer. The notice also provides examples of unlawful conduct by employers and unions that interfere with those rights and tells employees how to contact the National Labor Relations Board, the federal agency that enforces those rights, with questions or complaints (28 HRR 539, 5/24/10).

The interim rule creates a new FAR subpart 22.16 and clause 52.222-40, Notification of Employee Rights Under the National Labor Relations Act. It instructs contracting officers to insert FAR clause 52.222-40 in all solicitations and contracts, including acquisitions for commercial items and commercial items available off-the-shelf, except acquisitions under the simplified acquisition threshold, acquisitions for work performed outside the United States, and acquisitions exempted by the labor secretary.

Comments may be submitted via the federal e-rulemaking portal at and should be identified with FAC 2005-47, FAR Case 2010-006. Comments also may be mailed to the General Services Administration, Regulatory Secretariat (MVCB), Attention: Hada Flowers, 1275 First St. N.E., Washington, D.C. 20417.

Full text of the notice can be accessed at

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