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Labor Lawyers Await Northwestern Ruling,
Disagree About Organizing College Athletes

March 3, 2015, 5:00 AM

The five members of the National Labor Relations Board will have the next word on whether scholarship football players at Northwestern University are employees with a right to organize under federal law, but union and management practitioners at an American Bar Association labor law conference March 2 had sharply contrasting views on the subject.

Kristin L. Martin, who represents unions at Davis, Cowell & Bowe LLP in San Francisco, said it is “easy” to make the case that scholarship players are employees within the meaning of the National Labor Relations Act, and she argued an NLRB regional director correctly determined ...