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Gest v. Oregon AFL-CIO

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 04-04-2012
Case #: A145876
Hadlock, J. for the Court; Ortega, P.J.; and Sercombe, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/Publications/A145876.pdf

Labor Law: An informal employee grievance meeting is a "concerted activity" that is regulated by the NLRA. Under Garmon , the state must allow the National Labor Relations Board to determine labor disputes that the NLRA was designed to protect or prohibit.

Plaintiff Gest (Gest) appealed the trial court's summary judgment ruling for defendants, Oregon AFL-CIO (AFL-CIO) and Thomas Chamberlain (Chamberlain). Chamberlain fired Gest from the AFL-CIO one day after Gest organized an informal grievance meeting to discuss concerns about Chamberlain's leadership. Gest alleged that she was subsequently denied a job interview because of Chamberlain's negative comments to her potential employer. Gest sued the Oregon AFL-CIO and Chamberlain alleging "intentional interference with economic relations." The trial court granted summary judgment to the AFL-CIO and Chamberlain holding that Gest’s claim was preempted by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). Gest appealed and the Court affirmed holding that Gest's grievance meeting involved "concerted activity" that was regulated by the NLRA. Under Garmon, the state must allow the National Labor Relations Board to determine disputes that the NLRA was designed to protect or prohibit. Accordingly, Gest’s claim was preempted. Affirmed.