Weingarten Rights: What are they?

The U.S. Supreme Court’s 1975 decision in the Weingarten case held that if the employer requires an employee to submit to an investigatory meeting and denies the employee’s request for union representation, then the employer is in violation of the National Labor Relations Act.

What they mean

Union members have the right to a union representative at any meeting that they believe could possibly lead to disciplinary action.

If you are called into a meeting and have reason to believe that disciplinary action may be imposed, you have the right to have a union agent present during the meeting.

Read this statement to management: “If this discussion could in any way lead to my being disciplined or terminated, or affect my personal working conditions, I request my union representative be present at the meeting. Without representation, I choose not to answer any questions. This is my right under the U.S. Supreme Court decision called Weingarten.”

It is important to note:

  • The member must request a representative; the employer has no obligation to inform the employee of that right.
  • Management does not have to call the representative. Instead, the employer can stop the meeting or just issue the discipline.
  • Once a union representative is called, he or she has the right: (1) to know the subject of the investigatory meeting; (2) to confer with the member prior to the meeting; and (3) to speak during and participate in the meeting.
  • However, the representative cannot argue the case since this is not a grievance hearing.

If you have questions about your Weingarten Rights, contact your Teamsters Local 727 business representative at (847) 696-7500.

To learn more about Weingarten Rights, click here.