Strike Security in the United States
Strike security remains necessary for crossing the picket line during a difficult labor strike. Picket lines can be complex while employers negotiate with union leaders and attempt to conduct business despite missing a large portion of their workforce. In America, strikes are becoming even more common as many workers look for better deals from their employers that are in line with rising costs of living.
Employers experiencing a strike or expecting strike action in the near future should exercise caution and ensure that all parties involved are safe and protected. It’s no secret that tensions can run high on the picket line. Without the right preparations, an employer could face a long line of consequences, including property damage, threats to senior leadership, and potentially complex liability issues if someone is injured.
Strike Security Gone Wrong in Massachusetts
One strike in Massachusetts has recently taken a turn for the worst as several striking workers were arrested for disorderly conduct. A unionized fleet of truck drivers took to the picket line to strike against their employer, with close to 400 demonstrators delaying traffic, forcing vendors to wait several hours, and clashing with anyone crossing the picket line. Police had to be called after many strikers became “too rowdy,” posing a risk to company property.
Strike Security and the Consequences of Strike Action
Aside from the obvious dips in productivity that many employers will face during a strike, picket lines can become dangerous in a matter of minutes. When frustrations are high, some striking workers may turn against their employer and cause damage to company property, vandalize vehicles, or even verbally harass vendors and temporary workers. In especially difficult strikes, executives or managers may experience threats to themselves and their loved ones, along with organized protests at their homes. Even if the strike action is considered legal, it’s very easy for striking workforces to bend the rules and let emotions dictate their actions.
If an employer’s workforce is striking, the employer still must maintain a moral and legal obligation to create a safe workplace, despite strike action. If vendors or strikers are injured while on the picket line, employers could face complicated liability issues and be legally held responsible for any incident causing bodily harm. It’s in the best interest of employers to ensure that all parties play by the rules and to hold striking workers accountable for their actions.
Strike Security: Frequently Asked Questions
Find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions regarding employers experiencing a strike.
How Can an Employer Manage Strikers?
Every employer should plan for strike action, even if there are no rumblings among their workforce about a strike or unionization attempt. Inflation has driven up the costs of living across North America, and as one unionized workforce strikes, others may follow suit. It simply is a matter of time before unions are forced to seek better deals from their employers so that workers can make ends meet.
Contingency planning alongside a specialized third party can outline every detail of what your business will do in the event of a strike. Many security companies can provide picket line management and security teams to ensure strikers do not harm remaining employers crossing the picket line, while security services such as executive protection can ensure senior leaders can conduct their business safely.
How Can an Employer Ensure Striking Workers Behave Appropriately?
Evidence gathering is often overlooked by employers but is an essential part of holding strikers accountable and documenting any damage that has occurred. A simple security guard with a video camera can ensure that strikers respect the property and all those crossing the picket line.
How Can Employers Ensure a Safe Picket Line?
Picket line management services, including security guards, access control systems, and protective drivers can help mitigate potential dangers during a strike. Qualified security companies often have relationships with local law enforcement and can work alongside police to ensure a safe environment.
What Legal Options Do Employers Have During a Strike?
With the right legal guidance, employers can file a court injunction in order to bring a strike to an end. The legal rights of employers and striking workers are a delicate matter that must be navigated with proper legal counsel.
Strike Security and Solutions from AFIMAC
AFIMAC is an employer’s partner during difficult strikes, offering full-service solutions that include strike management, security, protective drivers, and legal resources to help resolve a strike as soon as possible. We continue to work alongside several major employers in the United States facing complex strike action, capable of providing security resources, contingency planning, and court injunctions. We can help any employer navigate the difficulties of union negotiations and labor turmoil.
If you require strike security services, contact Jim Rovers from AFIMAC at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would be happy to discuss your options and can dispatch resources to your job site anywhere in North America.