Know Our Union Rights

In 1975 the United States Supreme Court in the case of NLRB v. J. Weingarten, Inc. (1975) upheld a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) decision that employees have a right to union representation at investigatory interviews. These rights have become known as the Weingarten Rights.

What to do if you've been accused:


  • Contact your local union president or grievance char immediately.
  • Don't admit guilt or accept any blame.
  • Don't quit or sign any papers or agreements.
  • Don't agree to pay any expenses.
  • Avoid public statements.
  • Don't discuss the matter with anyone except your union representative.
  • Keep copies of all correspondence & papers.
  • Make written records of any meetings, with details and names.


Before the Meeting:

  • Find out what the meeting is about.
  • Request that a union representative go with you. You have the right to union representation during an interview if you believe the investigation might result in termination.
  • To exercise this right, you must request representation. Say: "If this discussion could in any way lead to my being disciplined or terminated, or affect my working conditions, I request that my union representative be present."
  • If the supervisor does not agree to your request for a union representative, attend the meeting anyway, but say: "Without representation, I will not answer any questions.

During the Meeting:

  • Take notes.
  • Take a break if you need to talk with your representative.
  • If asked to sign papers you disagree with, write: "My signature means only that I have seen this. It does not mean that I agree with it.

After the Meeting:

  • Write down to the best of your recollection everything that was said/discussed.
  • Contact your local union president or grievance chair immediately if they were not present during the meeting.
  • Consider whether of not to grieve or write a rebuttal.