Brief Fact Summary. Packard Motor Car Company (Company) employed about 32,000 rank and file workmen, and 1,100 foremen, who were supervisors. The NLRB approved a collective bargaining unit called the “Foreman’s Association of America,” which represented supervisory employees exclusively. The Company challenged the Board’s order, claiming that the foremen were not “employees” entitled to the advantages of the National Labor Relations Act (Act).
Synopsis of Rule of Law. Section:2 (2) of the Act reads: “The term ’employer’ includes any person acting in the interest of an employer, directly or indirectly.” The purpose of the section was to render employers responsible in labor practices for acts of any persons in their interests. The intention was not to deny the organizational privilege to employees simply because, in their supervisory position, they acted in the interest of the Company.
It involves of necessity a large measure of informed discretion, and the decision of the Board, if not final, is rarely to be disturbed.View Full Point of Law
Issue. Were foremen “employees” under the Act, entitled as a class to the rights of self- organization and collective bargaining?
Held. Yes, the foremen were employees of the Company. Affirmed. The purpose of Section:2(2) defining “employer” was not to deny the organizational privilege to those with supervisory positions, simply because they act in the interest of the company. Even those who act in the interest of the Company in some matters still have their own interests as employees of the Company. Dissent. The majority misunderstood the Wagner Act’s use of the terms “employee” and “employer.” Concurrence. None.
Discussion. The Court agreed with the Board’s interpretation of the Act.