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NGA Disappointed With New Joint Employer Rules

NGA logo independent grocers

The National Grocers Association (NGA), the national trade association representing the independent supermarket industry, issued the following statement from SVP and Counsel Chris Jones in response to the National Labor Relations Board’s new regulations on joint employer standards under the National Labor Relations Act:

“This final rule considerably broadens the existing definition of a ‘joint employer,’ exposing independent community grocers, cooperatives and other small businesses to legal uncertainty and an increased likelihood of litigation. As independent community grocers and wholesalers grapple with ongoing labor shortages and workforce gaps, the introduction of such federal regulations not only worsens these existing challenges but also places them at risk of heightened liability and labor costs that are particularly burdensome in an industry with historically slim profit margins.”

According to the NLRB, “under the new standard, an entity may be considered a joint employer of a group of employees if each entity has an employment relationship with the employees and they share or codetermine one or more of the employees’ essential terms and conditions of employment, which are defined exclusively as: (1) wages, benefits, and other compensation; (2) hours of work and scheduling; (3) the assignment of duties to be performed; (4) the supervision of the performance of duties; (5) work rules and directions governing the manner, means, and methods of the performance of duties and the grounds for discipline; (6) the tenure of employment, including hiring and discharge; and (7) working conditions related to the safety and health of employees.

NGA submitted comments on the rule in December of 2022, outlining concerns with the proposed rules and providing policy recommendations to provide independent community grocers with the necessary flexibility. Specifically, NGA advocated for clear and concise definitions of essential employment terms and conditions, as well as a safe harbor for the contracts within cooperative business models.

NGA also joined comments filed by the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace.

About NGA

NGA is the national trade association representing the retail and wholesale community grocers that comprise the independent sector of the food distribution industry. An independent retailer is a privately owned or controlled food retail company operating a variety of formats. The independent grocery sector is accountable for about 1.2 percent of the nation’s overall economy and is responsible for generating more than $250 billion in sales, 1.1 million jobs, $39 billion in wages and $36 billion in taxes. NGA members include retail and wholesale grocers located in every congressional district across the country, as well as state grocers’ associations, manufacturers and service suppliers.

Read more association news at The Shelby Report.

About the author

Treva Bennett

Senior Content Creator

After 32 years in the newspaper industry, she is enjoying her new career exploring the world of groceries at The Shelby Report.

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