PUBLIC EMPLOYE RELATIONS ACT (Act of July 23, 1970, P. L. 563, No. 195, as amended) (43
P. S., Sections 1101.101 to 1101.2301 inclusive)
An Act establishing rights in public employes to organize and bargain collectively
through selected representatives; defining public employes to include employes of
nonprofit organizations and institutions; providing compulsory mediation and fact-
finding, for collective bargaining impasses; providing arbitration for certain public
employes for collective bargaining impasses; defining the scope of collective bargaining;
establishing unfair employe and employer practices; prohibiting strikes for certain public
employes; permitting strikes under limited conditions; providing penalties for violations;
and establishing procedures for implementation.
Article I. Public Policy
Article II. Short Title
Article III. Definition
Article IV. Employe Rights
Article V. Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board
Article VI. Representation
Article VII. Scope of Bargaining
Article VIII. Collective Bargaining Impasse
Article IX. Collective Bargaining Agreement
Article X. Strikes
Article XI. Picketing
Article XII. Unfair Practices
Article XIII. Prevention of Unfair Practices
Article XIV. Unfair Practices During Article VIII Procedures
Article XV. Judicial Review
Article XVI. Investigatory Powers
Article XVII. Employe Organizations
Article XVIII. Conflict of Interest
Article XIX. Penalties
Article XX. Savings Provisions
Article XXI. Separability
Article XXII. Repeals
Article XXIII. Effective Date
ARTICLE I Public Policy
Section 101. The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania declares that it
is the public policy of this Commonwealth and the purpose of this act to promote orderly
and constructive relationships between all public employers and their employes subject,
however, to the paramount right of the citizens of this Commonwealth to keep inviolate the
guarantees for their health, safety and welfare. Unresolved disputes between the public
employer and its employes are injurious to the public and the General Assembly is
therefore aware that adequate means must be established for minimizing them and providing
for their resolution. Within the limitations imposed upon the governmental processes by
these rights of the public at large and recognizing that harmonious relationships are
required between the public employer and its employes, the
General Assembly has determined that the overall policy may best be accomplished by
(1) granting to public employes the right to organize and choose freely their
(2) requiring public employers to negotiate and bargain with employe organizations
representing public employes and to enter into written
agreements evidencing the result of
such bargaining; and
(3) establishing procedures to provide for the protection of the rights of the public
employe, the public employer and the public at large.
ARTICLE II Short Title
Section 201. This act shall be known and may be cited as the “Public Employe
ARTICLE III Definitions
Section 301. As used in this act:
(1) “Public employer” means the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, its political
subdivisions including school districts and any officer, board, commission, agency,
authority, or other instrumentality thereof and any nonprofit organization or institution
and any charitable, religious, scientific, literary, recreational, health, educational or
welfare institution receiving grants or appropriations from local, State or Federal
governments but shall not include employers covered or presently subject to coverage under
the act of June 1, 1937 (P. L. 1168), as amended, known as the “Pennsylvania Labor
Relations Act, the act of July 5, 1935, Public Law 198, 74th Congress, as amended, known
as the “National Labor Relations Act.”
(2) “Public employe” or “employe” means any individual employed by
a public employer but shall not include elected officials, appointees of the Governor with
the advice and consent of the Senate as required by law, management level employes,
confidential employes, clergymen or other persons in a religious profession, employes or
personnel at church offices or facilities when utilized primarily for religious purposes
and those employes covered under the act of June 24, 1968 (Act No. 111), entitled “An
act specifically authorizing collective bargaining between policemen and firemen and their
public employers; providing for arbitration in order to settle disputes, and requiring
compliance with collective bargaining agreements and findings of arbitrators.”
(3) “Employe organization” means an organization of any kind, or any agency
or employe representation committee or plan in which membership includes public employes,
and which exists for the purpose, in whole or in part, of dealing with employers
concerning grievances, employe- employer disputes, wages, rates of pay, hours of
employment, or conditions of work but shall not include any organization which practices
discrimination in membership because of race, color, creed, national origin or political
(4) “Representative” means any individuals acting for public employers or
employes and shall include employe organizations.
(5) “Board” means the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board.
(6) “Supervisor” means any individual having authority in the interests of
the employer to hire, transfer, suspend, layoff, recall, promote, discharge, assign,
reward or discipline other employes or responsibly to direct them or adjust their
grievances; or to a substantial degree effectively recommend such action, if in connection
with the foregoing, the exercise of such authority is not merely routine or clerical in
nature but calls for the use of independent judgment.
(7) “Professional employe” means any employe whose work: (i) is predominantly
intellectual and varied in character; (ii) requires consistent exercise of discretion and
judgment; (iii) requires knowledge of an advanced nature in the field of science or
learning customarily acquired by specialized study in an institution of higher learning or
its equivalent; and (iv) is of such character that the output or result accomplished
cannot be standardized in relation to a given period of time.
(8) “Unfair practice” means any practice prohibited by Article XII of this
(9) “Strike” means concerted action in failing to report for duty, the
willful absence from one’s position, the stoppage of work, slowdown, or the
abstinence in whole or in part from the full, faithful and proper performance of the
duties of employment for the purpose of inducing, influencing or coercing a change in the
conditions or compensation or the rights, privileges, or obligations of employment.
(10) “Person” includes an individual, public employer, public employe,
authority, commission, legal representative, labor organization, employe organization,
profit or nonprofit corporation, trustee, board or association.
(11) “Membership dues deduction” means the practice of a public employer to
deduct from the wages of a public employe, with his written consent, an amount for the
payment of his membership dues in an employe organization, which deduction is transmitted
by the public employer to the employe organization.
(12) “Budget submission date” means the date by which under the law or
practice a public employer’s proposed budget, or budget containing proposed
expenditures applicable to such public employer is submitted to the Legislature or other
similar body for final action. For the purposes of this act, the budget submission date
for the Commonwealth shall be February 1 of each year and for a nonprofit organization or
institution, the last day of its fiscal year.
(13) “Confidential employe” shall mean any employe who works: (i) in the
personnel offices of a public employer and has access to information subject to use by the
public employer in collective bargaining; or (ii) in a close continuing relationship with
public officers or representatives associated with collective bargaining on behalf of the
(14) “Wages” means hourly rates of pay, salaries or other forms of
compensation for services rendered.
(15) “Commonwealth employe” means a public employe employed by the
Commonwealth or any board, commission, agency, authority, or any other instrumentality
(16) “Management level employe” means any individual who is involved directly
in the determination of policy or who responsibly directs the implementation thereof and
shall include all employes above the first level of supervision.
(17) “Meet and discuss” means the obligation of a public employer upon
request to meet at reasonable times and discuss recommendations submitted by
representatives of public employes: Provided, That any decisions or determinations on
matters so discussed shall remain with the public employer and be deemed final on any
issue or issues raised.
(18) “Maintenance of membership” means that all employes who have joined an
employe organization or who join the employe organization in the future must remain
members for the duration of a collective bargaining agreement so providing with the
proviso that any such employe or employes may resign from such employe organization during
a period of fifteen days prior to the expiration of any such agreement.
(19) “First level of supervision” and “first level supervisor”
means the lowest level at which an employe functions as a supervisor.
ARTICLE IV Employe Rights
Section 401. It shall be lawful for public employes to organize, form, join or assist
in employe organizations or to engage in lawful concerted activities for the purpose of
collective bargaining or other mutual aid and protection or to bargain collectively
through representatives of their own free choice and such employes shall also have the
right to refrain from any or all such activities, except as may be required pursuant to a
maintenance of membership provision in a collective bargaining agreement.
ARTICLE V Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board
Section 501. The board shall exercise those powers and perform those duties which are
specifically provided for in this act. These powers and duties shall be in addition to and
exercised completely independent of any powers and duties specifically granted to it by
other statutory enactments.
Section 502. The board shall have authority from time to time to make, amend and
rescind such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this
act. (As amended by Act of July 9, 1976, P. L. 877, No. 160.)
Section 503. The board shall establish after consulting representatives of employe
organizations and of public employers, panels of qualified persons broadly representative
of the public to be available to serve as members of fact- finding boards.
ARTICLE VI Representation
Section 601. Public employers may select representatives to act in their interest in
any collective bargaining with representatives of public employes.
Section 602. (a) A public employer may recognize employe representatives for collective
bargaining purposes, provided the parties jointly request certification by the board which
shall issue such certification if it finds the unit appropriate.
(b) Any employe representatives in existence on January 1, 1970, shall so continue
without the requirement of an election and certification until such time as a question
concerning representation is appropriately raised under this act; or until the board would
find the unit not to be appropriate after challenge by the public employer, a member of
the unit or an employe organization. The appropriateness of the unit shall not be
challenged until the expiration of any collective bargaining agreement in effect on the
date of the passage of this act.
Section 603. (a) A public employe, a group of public employes or an employe
organization may notify the public employer that thirty per cent or more of the public
employes in an appropriate unit desire to be exclusively represented for collective
bargaining purposes by a designated representative and request the public employer to
consent to an election.
(b) If the public employer consents, the public employe, group of public employes or
employe organization whichever applicable may submit in a form and manner established by
the board an election request. Such request shall include a description of the unit deemed
to be appropriate, the basis upon which it was determined that thirty per cent or more of
the employes desired to be represented and a joinder by the public employer. The board may
on the basis of the submissions order an election to be held or it may at its discretion
investigate or conduct hearings to determine the validity of the matters contained in such
submissions before determining whether or not an order should issue.
(c) If a public employer refuses to consent to an election, the party making the
request may file a petition with the board alleging that thirty per cent or more of the
public employes in an appropriate unit wish to be exclusively represented for collective
bargaining purposes by a designated representative. The board shall send a copy of the
petition to the public employer and provide for an appropriate hearing upon due notice. If
it deems the allegations in the petition to be valid and the unit to be appropriate it
shall order an election. If it finds to the contrary it may dismiss the petition or permit
its amendment in accordance with procedures established by the board.
(d) If a public employer receives notification that thirty per cent or more of the
public employes desire to be exclusively represented for collective bargaining purposes by
a designated representative and the party giving notice does not thereafter seek an
election the public employer may file a petition for the same with the board. The board
shall then follow the procedures as established for petitions filed under subsection (c)
of this section.
Section 604. The board shall determine the appropriateness of a unit which shall be the
public employer unit or a subdivision thereof. In determining the appropriateness of the
unit, the board shall:
(1) Take into consideration but shall not be limited to the following: (i) public
employes must have an identifiable community of interest, and (ii) the effects of over
(2) Not decide that any unit is appropriate if such unit includes both professional and
nonprofessional employes, unless a majority of such professional employes vote for
inclusion in such unit.
(3) Not permit guards at prisons and mental hospitals, employes directly involved with
and necessary to the functioning of the courts of this Commonwealth, or any individual
employed as a guard to enforce against employes and other persons, rules to protect
property of the employer or to protect the safety of persons on the employer’s
premises to be included in any unit with other public employes, each may form separate
homogenous employe organizations with the proviso that organizations of the latter
designated employe group may not be affiliated with any other organization representing or
including as members, persons outside of the organization’s classification.
(4) Take into consideration that when the Commonwealth is the employer, it will be
bargaining on a Statewide basis unless issues involve working conditions peculiar to a
given governmental employment locale. This section, however, shall not be deemed to
prohibit multi- unit bargaining.
(5) Not permit employes at the first level of supervision to be included with any other
units of public employes but shall permit them to form their own separate homogenous
units. In determining supervisory status the board may take into consideration the extent
to which supervisory and nonsupervisory functions are performed.
Section 605. Representation elections shall be conducted by secret ballot at such times
and places selected by the board subject to the following:
(1) The board shall give no less than ten days notice of the time and place of such
(2) The board shall establish rules and regulations concerning the conduct of any
election including but not limited to regulations which would guarantee the secrecy of the
(3) A representative may not be certified unless it receives a majority of the valid
(4) The board shall include on the ballot a choice of “no representative.”
(5) In an election where none of the choices on the ballot receives a majority, a run-
off election shall be conducted, the ballot providing for a selection between the two
choices or parties receiving the highest and the second highest number of ballots cast in
(6) The board, shall certify the results of said election within five working days
after the final tally of votes if no charge is filed by any person alleging that an
“unfair practice” existed in connection with said election. If the board has
reason to believe that such allegations are valid, it shall set a time for hearing on the
matter after due notice. Any such hearing shall be conducted within two weeks of the date
of receipt of such charge. If the board determines that the outcome of the election was
affected by the “unfair practice” charged or for any other “unfair
practice” it may deem existed, it shall require corrective action and order a new
election. If the board determines that no unfair practice existed or if it existed, did
not affect the outcome of the election, it shall immediately certify the election results.
(7) (i) No election shall be conducted pursuant to this section in any appropriate
bargaining unit within which in the preceding twelve- month period an election shall have
been held nor during the term of any lawful collective bargaining agreement between a
public employer and an employe representative. This restriction shall not apply to that
period of time covered by any collective bargaining agreement which exceeds three years.
For the purposes of this section, extensions of agreements shall not affect the expiration
date of the original agreement.
(ii) Petitions for elections may be filed with the board not sooner than ninety days
nor later than sixty days before the expiration date of any collective bargaining
agreement or after the expiration date until such time as a new written agreement has been
entered into. For the purposes of this section, extensions of agreements shall not affect
the expiration date of the original agreement. Section 606. Representatives selected by
public employes in a unit appropriate for collective bargaining purposes shall be the
exclusive representative of all the employes in such unit to bargain on wages, hours,
terms and conditions of employment: Provided, That any individual employe or a group of
employes shall have the right at any time to present grievances to their employer and to
have them adjusted without the intervention of the bargaining representative as long as
the adjustment is not inconsistent with the terms of a collective bargaining contract then
in effect: And, provided further, That the bargaining representative has been given an
opportunity to be present at such adjustment.
Section 607. If there is a duly certified representative:
(i) a public employe or a group of public employes may file a petition for
decertification provided it is supported by a thirty per cent showing of interest, or
(ii) a public employer alleging a good faith doubt of the majority status of said
representative may file a petition in accordance with the rules and regulations
established by the board, subject to the provisions of clause (7) of section 605.
ARTICLE VII Scope of Bargaining
Section 701. Collective bargaining is the performance of the mutual obligation of the
public employer and the representative of the public employes to meet at reasonable times
and confer in good faith with respect to wages, hours and other terms and conditions of
employment, or the negotiation of an agreement or any question arising thereunder and the
execution of a written contract incorporating any agreement reached but such obligation
does not compel either party to agree to a proposal or require the making of a concession.
Section 702. Public employers shall not be required to bargain over matters of inherent
managerial policy, which shall include but shall not be limited to such areas of
discretion or policy as the functions and programs of the public employer, standards of
services, its overall budget, utilization of technology, the organizational structure and
selection and direction of personnel. Public employers, however, shall be required
to meet and discuss on policy matters affecting wages, hours and terms and conditions of
employment as well as the impact thereon upon request by public employe representatives.
Section 703. The parties to the collective bargaining process shall not effect or
implement a provision in a collective bargaining agreement if the implementation of that
provision would be in violation of, or inconsistent with, or in conflict with any statute
or statutes enacted by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania or the
provisions of municipal home rule charters.
Section 704. Public employers shall not be required to bargain with units of first
level supervisors or their representatives but shall be required to meet and discuss with
first level supervisors or their representatives, on matters deemed to be bargainable for
other public employes covered by this act.
Section 705. Membership dues deductions and maintenance of membership are proper
subjects of bargaining with the proviso that as to the latter, the payment of dues and
assessments while members, may be the only requisite employment condition.
Section 706. Nothing contained in this act shall impair the employer’s right to
hire employes or to discharge employes for just cause consistent with existing
ARTICLE VIII Collective Bargaining Impasse
Section 801. If after a reasonable period of negotiation, a dispute or impasse exists
between the representatives of the public employer and the public employes, the parties
may voluntarily submit to mediation but if no agreement is reached between the parties
within twenty- one days after negotiations have commenced, but in no event later than one
hundred fifty days prior to the “budget submission date,” and mediation has not
been utilized by the parties, both parties shall immediately, in writing, call in the
service of the Pennsylvania Bureau of Mediation.
Section 802. Once mediation has commenced, it shall continue for so long as the parties
have not reached an agreement. If, however, an agreement has not been reached within
twenty days after mediation has commenced or in no event later than one hundred thirty
days prior to the “budget submission date,” the Bureau of Mediation shall notify
the board of this fact. Upon receiving such notice the board may in its discretion appoint
a fact- finding panel which panel may consist of either one or three members. If a panel
is so designated or selected it shall hold hearings and take oral or written testimony and
shall have subpoena power. If during this time the parties have not reached an agreement,
the panel shall make findings of fact and recommendations:
(1) The findings of fact and recommendations shall be sent by registered mail to the
board and to both parties not more than forty days after the Bureau of Mediation has
notified the board as provided in the preceding paragraph.
(2) Not more than ten days after the findings and recommendations shall have been sent,
the parties shall notify the board and each other whether or not they accept the
recommendations of the fact- finding panel and if they do not, the panel shall publicize
its findings of fact and recommendations.
(3) Not less than five days nor more than ten days after the publication of the
findings of fact and recommendations, the parties shall again inform the board and each
other whether or not they will accept the recommendations of the fact- finding panel.
(4) The Commonwealth shall pay one- half the cost of the fact- finding panel; the
remaining one- half of the cost shall be divided equally between the parties. The board
shall establish rules and regulations under which panels shall operate, including, but not
limited to, compensation for panel members.
Section 803. If the representatives of either or both the public employes and the
public employer refuse to submit to the procedures set forth in sections 801 and 802 of
this article, such refusal shall be deemed a refusal to bargain in good faith and unfair
practice charges may be filed by the submitting party or the board may on its own, issue
an unfair practice complaint and conduct such hearings and issue such orders as provided
for in Article XIII.
Section 804. Nothing in this article shall prevent the parties from submitting impasses
to voluntary binding arbitration with the proviso the decisions of the arbitrator which
would require legislative enactment to the effective shall be considered advisory only.
Section 805. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this act where representatives of
units of guards at prisons or mental hospitals or units of employes directly involved with
and necessary to the functioning of the courts of this Commonwealth have reached an
impasse in collective bargaining and mediation as required in section 801 of this article
has not resolved the dispute, the impasse shall be submitted to a panel of arbitrators
whose decision shall be final and binding upon both parties with the proviso that the
decisions of the arbitrators which would require legislative enactment to be effective
shall be considered advisory only.
Section 806. Panels of arbitrators for bargaining units referred to in section 805 of
this article shall be selected in the following manner:
(1) Each party shall select one member of the panel, the two so selected shall choose
the third member.
(2) If the members so selected are unable to agree upon the third member within ten
days from the date of their selection, the board shall submit the names of seven persons,
each party shall alternately strike one name until one shall remain. The public employer
shall strike the first name. The person so remaining shall be the third member and
Section 806. (A) Whenever a panel of arbitrators is hereafter constituted pursuant to
the provisions of section 806 of the act of July 23, 1970 (P. L. 563, No. 195), known as
the “Public Employe Relations Act,” the cost of the arbitrator selected by each
party shall be paid by the respective party selecting the arbitrator. The cost of the
impartial arbitrator selected by the arbitrators already selected or selected in
accordance with the procedure set forth in section 806( 2) of the act of July 23, 1970 (P.
L. 563, No. 195), known as the “Public Employe Relations Act,” shall be paid by
the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board. (As added by the Act of May 20, 1976, P. L. 142,
Section 807. Repealed. Act of May 20, 1976, P. L. 142, No. 67.
ARTICLE IX Collective Bargaining Agreement
Section 901. Once an agreement is reached between the representatives of the public
employes and the public employer, the agreement shall be reduced to writing and signed by
the parties. Any provisions of the contract requiring legislative action will only be
effective if such legislation is enacted.
Section 902. If the provisions of the constitution or bylaws of an employe organization
requires ratification of a collective bargaining agreement by its membership, only those
members who belong to the bargaining unit involved shall be entitled to vote on such
ratification notwithstanding such provisions.
Section 903. Arbitration of disputes or grievances arising out of the interpretation of
the provisions of a collective bargaining agreement is mandatory. The procedure to be
adopted is a proper subject of bargaining with the proviso that the final step shall
provide for a binding decision by an arbitrator or a tripartite board of arbitrators as
the parties may agree. Any decisions of the arbitrators or arbitrators requiring
legislation will only be effective if such legislation is enacted:
(1) If the parties cannot voluntarily agree upon the selection of an arbitrator, the
parties shall notify the Bureau of Mediation of their inability to do so. The Bureau of
Mediation shall then submit to the parties the names of seven arbitrators. Each party shad
alternately strike a name until one name remains. The public employer shall strike the
first name. The person remaining shall be the arbitrator.
(2) The costs of arbitration shall be shared equally by the parties. Fees paid to
arbitrators shall be based on a schedule established by the Bureau of Mediation.
Section 904. Any provision of any collective bargaining agreement in existence on
January 1, 1970 which is inconsistent with any provision of this act but not otherwise
illegal shall continue valid until the expiration of such contract. The parties to such
agreements may continue voluntarily to bargain on any such items after the expiration date
of any such agreement and for so long as these items remain in any future agreement.
ARTICLE X Strikes
Section 1001. Strikes by guards at prisons or mental hospitals, or employes directly
involved with and necessary to the functioning of the courts of this Commonwealth are
prohibited at any time. If a strike occurs the public employer shall forthwith initiate in
the court of common pleas of the jurisdiction where the strike occurs, an action for
appropriate equitable relief including but not limited to injunctions. If the strike
involves Commonwealth employes, the chief legal officer of the public employer or the
Attorney General where required by law shall institute an action for equitable relief,
either in the court of common pleas of the jurisdiction where the strike has occurred or
the Commonwealth Court.
Section 1002. Strikes by public employes during the pendency of collective bargaining
procedures set forth in sections 801 and 802 of Article VIII are prohibited. In the event
of a strike during this period the public employer shall forthwith initiate an action for
the same relief and utilizing the same procedures required for prohibited strikes under
section 1001. Section 1003. If a strike by public employes occurs after the collective
bargaining processes set forth in sections 801 and 802 of Article VIII of this act have
been completely utilized and exhausted, it shall not be prohibited unless or until such a
strike creates a clear and present danger or threat to the health, safety or welfare of
the public. In such cases the public employer shall initiate, in the court of common pleas
of the jurisdiction where such strike occurs, an action for equitable relief including but
not limited to appropriate injunctions and shall be entitled to such relief if the court
finds that the strike creates a clear and present danger or threat to the health, safety
or welfare of the public. If the strike involves Commonwealth employes, the chief legal
officer of the public employer or the Attorney General where required by law shall
institute an action for equitable relief in the court of common pleas of the jurisdiction
where the strike has occurred or the Commonwealth Court. Prior to the filing of any
complaint in equity under the provisions of this section the moving party shall serve upon
the defendant a copy of said complaint as provided for in the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil
Procedure applicable to such actions. Hearings shall be required before relief is granted
under this section and notices of the same shall be served in the manner required for the
original process with a duty imposed upon the court to hold such hearings forthwith.
Section 1004. An unfair practice by a public employer shall not be a defense to a
prohibited strike. Unfair practices by the employer during the collective bargaining
processes shall receive priority by the board as set forth in Article XIV.
Section 1005. If a public employe refuses to comply with a lawful order of a court of
competent jurisdiction issued for a violation of any of the provisions of this article the
public employer shall initiate an action for contempt and if the public employe is
adjudged guilty of such contempt, he shall be subject to suspension, demotion or discharge
at the discretion of the public employer, provided the public employer has not exercised
that discretion in violation of clauses (1), (2), (3) and (4) of subsection (a) of section
1201, Article XII.
Section 1006. No public employe shall be entitled to pay or compensation from the
public employer for the period engaged in any strike.
Section 1007. In the event any public employe refuses to obey an order issued by a
court of competent jurisdiction for a violation of the provisions of this article, the
punishment for such contempt may be by fine or by imprisonment in the prison of the county
where the court is sitting or both in the discretion of the court.
Section 1008. Where an employe organization wilfully disobeys a lawful order of a court
of competent jurisdiction issued for a violation of the provisions of this article, the
punishment for each day that such contempt persists may be by a fine fixed in the
discretion of the court.
Section 1009. In fixing the amount of the fine or imprisonment for contempt, the court
shall consider all the facts and circumstances directly related to the contempt including
but not limited to:
(i) any unfair practices conducted by the public employer during the collective
(ii) the extent of the willful defiance or resistance to the court’s order;
(iii) the impact of the strike on the health, safety or welfare of the public, and
(iv) the ability of the employe organization or the employe to pay the fine imposed.
Section 1010. Nothing in this article shall prevent the parties from voluntarily
requesting the court for a diminution or suspension of any fines or penalties imposed. Any
requests by employe representatives for such participation by the public employer shall be
subject to the requirements of “meet and discuss.”
ARTICLE XI Picketing
Section 1101. Public employes other than those engaged in a nonprohibited strike who
refuse to cross a picket line shall be deemed to be engaged in a prohibited strike and
shall be subject to the terms and conditions of Article X pertaining to prohibited
ARTICLE XII Unfair Practices
Section 1201. (a) Public employers, their agents or representatives are prohibited
(1) Interfering, restraining or coercing employes in the exercise of the rights
guaranteed in Article IV of this act.
(2) Dominating or interfering with the formation, existence or administration of any
(3) Discriminating in regard to hire or tenure of employment or any term or condition
of employment to encourage or discourage membership in any employe organization.
(4) Discharging or otherwise discriminating against an employe because he has signed or
filed an affidavit, petition or complaint or given any information or testimony under this
(5) Refusing to bargain collectively in good faith with an employe representative which
is the exclusive representative of employes in an appropriate unit, including but not
limited to the discussing of grievances with the exclusive representative.
(6) Refusing to reduce a collective bargaining agreement to writing and sign such
(7) Violating any of the rules and regulations established by the board regulating the
conduct of representation elections.
(8) Refusing to comply with the provisions of an arbitration award deemed binding under
section 903 of Article IX.
(9) Refusing to comply with the requirements of “meet and discuss.”
(b) Employe organizations, their agents, or representatives, or public employes are
(1) Restraining or coercing employes in the exercise of the rights guaranteed in
Article IV of this act.
(2) Restraining or coercing a public employer in the selection of his representative
for the purposes of collective bargaining or the adjustment of grievances.
(3) Refusing to bargain collectively in good faith with a public employer, if they have
been designated in accordance with the provisions of this act as the exclusive
representative of employes in an appropriate unit.
(4) Violating any of the rules and regulations established by the board regulating the
conduct of representation elections.
(5) Refusing to reduce a collective bargaining agreement to writing and sign such
(6) Calling, instituting, maintaining or conducting a strike or boycott against any
public employer or picketing any place of business of a public employer on account of any
(7) Engaging in, or inducing or encouraging any individual employed by any person to
engage in a strike or refusal to handle goods or perform services; or threatening,
coercing or restraining any person where an object thereof is to (i) force or require any
public employer to cease dealing or doing business with any other person or (ii) force or
require a public employer to recognize for representation purposes an employe organization
not certified by the board.
(8) Refusing to comply with the provisions of an arbitration award deemed binding under
section 903 of Article IX.
(9) Refusing to comply with the requirements of “meet and discuss.”
ARTICLE XIII Prevention of Unfair Practices
Section 1301. The board is empowered, as hereinafter provided, to prevent any person
from engaging in any unfair practice listed in Article XII of this act. This power shall
be exclusive and shall not be affected by any other means of adjustment or prevention that
have been or may be established by agreement, law, or otherwise.
Section 1302. Whenever it is charged by any interested party that any person has
engaged in or is engaging in any such unfair practice, the board, or any member or
designated agent thereof, shall have authority to issue and cause to be served upon such
person a complaint, stating the charges in the respect, and containing a notice of hearing
before the board, or any member or designated agent thereof, at a place therein fixed not
less than five days after the serving of said complaint. Any such complaint may be amended
by the board, member or agent conducting the hearing at any time prior to the issuance of
an order based thereon. The person so complained of shall have the right to file an answer
to the original or amended complaint and to appear in person, or otherwise, to give
testimony at the place and time set in the complaint. In the discretion of a member or
agent conducting the hearing or of the board, any other person may be allowed to intervene
in the said proceeding and to present testimony. In any such proceeding, the rules of
evidence prevailing in courts of law or equity shall be followed but shall not be
Section 1303. Testimony shall be taken at the hearing and filed with the board. The
board upon notice may take further testimony or hear argument. If, upon all the testimony
taken, the board shall determine that any person named in the complaint has engaged in or
is engaging in any such unfair practice, the board shall state its findings of fact, and
issue and cause to be served on such person an order requiring such person to cease and
desist from such unfair practice, and to take such reasonable affirmative action,
including reinstatement of employes discharged in violation of Article XII of this act,
with or without back pay, as will effectuate the policies of this act. Such order may
further require such person to make reasonable reports, from time to time, showing the
extent to which the order has been complied with. If, upon all the testimony, the board
shall be of the opinion that the person or persons named in the complaint has not engaged
in or is not engaging in any such unfair practice, then the board shall make its findings
of fact and shall issue an order dismissing the complaint. A copy of such findings of
fact, conclusions of law, and order shall be mailed to all parties to the proceedings.
Section 1304. Until a transcript of the record in a case shall have been filed in a
court as hereinafter provided, the board may at any time, upon reasonable notice, and in
such manner as it shall deem proper, modify or set aside, in whole or in part, any finding
or order made or issued by it: Provided, That any agreement made between an employer and a
bona fide employe organization, and all the provisions thereof, shall be entitled to full
force and effect unless the board specifically finds that these provisions involve the
commission of an unfair practice within the meaning of Article XII of this act.
Section 1305. The proceedings before the board or before any of its examiners shall be
conducted with speed and dispatch. No findings shall be made on the basis of evidence
relating to acts which occurred prior to the original passage of this act.
Section 1306. All cases in which complaints are actually issued by the board, shall be
prosecuted before the board or its examiner, or both, by the representatives of the
employe organization or party filing the charge, and, in addition thereto or in lieu
thereof if the Department of Justice sees fit, by a deputy attorney general especially
assigned to this type of case. No examiner shall have any other position with the
government of this State or of the United States or with the Pennsylvania Labor Relations
Board while in the employ of the board.
ARTICLE XIV Unfair Practices During Article VIII Procedures
Section 1401. Notwithstanding any of the provisions of Article XIII, the board upon the
filing of a charge alleging the commission of an unfair labor practice committed during,
or arising out of the collective bargaining procedures set forth in sections 801 and 802
of Article VIII of this act, shall be empowered to petition the court of competent
jurisdiction for appropriate relief or restraining order. Upon filing of any such petition
the board shall cause notice thereof to be served upon such person and thereupon the court
shall have jurisdiction to grant to the board such temporary relief or restraining order
as it deems just and proper.
ARTICLE XV Judicial Review
Section 1501. The board shall except where an employe of the Commonwealth is involved
have power to petition the court of common pleas of any county wherein the unfair practice
in question occurred, or wherein any person charged with the commission of any unfair
practice resides or transacts business, for the enforcement of such order and for
appropriate temporary relief or restraining order, and shall certify and file in the court
a transcript of the entire record in the proceeding, including the pleadings and testimony
upon which such order was entered and the findings and order of the board. In the instance
of the exception involving the said Commonwealth employes, the board shall file its
petition in the Commonwealth Court. Upon such filing, the court shall cause notice thereof
to be served upon such person, and thereupon shall have jurisdiction of the proceeding and
of the question determined therein, and shall have power to grant such temporary relief,
restraining or mandamus order as it deems just and proper or requisite to effectuate the
policies of this act and to make and enter upon the pleadings, testimony, and proceedings
set forth in such transcript a decree enforcing, modifying and enforcing as so modified,
or setting aside, in whole or in part, the order of the board. The parties before the
court shall be the board, the person charged with the commission of any unfair labor
practice, and may include the charging party. No objection that has not been urged before
the board, its members or agents shall be considered by the court unless the failure or
neglect to urge such objection shall be excused because of extraordinary circumstances.
The findings of the board as to the facts, if supported by substantial and legally
credible evidence, shall be conclusive. If either party shall apply to the court for leave
to adduce additional evidence, and shall show to the satisfaction of the court, that such
additional evidence is material, and that there were reasonable grounds for the failure to
adduce such evidence at the hearing before the board, its members or agent, the court may
order such additional evidence to be taken before the board, its members or agent, and to
be made a part of the transcript. The board may modify its findings as to the facts or
make new findings by reason of additional evidence so taken and filed, and it shall file
such modified or new findings which, if supported by substantial and legally credible
evidence, shall be conclusive, and shall file its recommendations, if any, for the
modification or setting aside of its original order. (As amended by Act of June 3, 1971,
P. L. 146, No. 6.)
Section 1502. Repealed. Act of April 28, 1978, P. L. 202, No. 53. (For disposition of
repealed subject matter, relating to review in court of common pleas and Supreme Court,
see Disposition Table preceding Title 42, Judiciary and Judicial Procedures, of the
Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Annotated.)
Section 1503. The commencement of proceedings under sections 1501 or 1502 of this
article shall not, unless specifically ordered by the court, operate as a stay of the
Section 1504. When granting appropriate temporary relief, a restraining or mandamus
order or making and entering a decree enforcing, modifying, or enforcing as so modified,
or setting aside in whole or in part an order of the board, as provided in this section,
the jurisdiction of courts sitting in equity shall not be limited by acts pertaining to
equity jurisdiction of courts. The act of June 2, 1937 (P. L. 1198), known as the
“Labor Anti- Injunction Act,” shall not be applicable to orders of the board, or
to court orders enforcing orders of the board, or any provision of this act, or to
violations of any order of the board, or of court orders enforcing orders of the board, or
any provisions of this act.
Section 1505. No petitions or charges involving questions arising under clause (2) of
subsection (a) of section 1201 of Article XII shall relieve the board of determining any
questions arising under sections 603, 604 and 605 of Article VI immediately, and in their
regular and normal order, and the making of a certification thereon if such is warranted.
No petition or charge shall be entertained which relates to acts which occurred or
statements which were made more than four months prior to the filing of the petition or
charge. (As affected by Act of April 28, 1978, P. L. 202, No. 53.)
ARTICLE XVI Investigatory Powers
Section 1601. For the purpose of all hearings and investigations which, in the opinion
of the board, are necessary and proper for the exercise of the powers vested in it by
Article VI and Article XIII, and for the purpose of investigating and considering
disputes, other than a question concerning the representation of employes, which it shall
be the duty of the board to undertake whenever petitioned so to do by either an employe
organization, an employer, or the representative of any unit of employes, the board shall
have the Investigatory powers granted in this article.
Section 1602. The board or its duly authorized agents shall at all reasonable times
have access to, for the purpose of examination and the right to copy, any evidence of any
person being investigated or proceeded against that relates to any matter under
investigation or in question. Any member of the board shall have the power to issue
subpoenas requiring the attendance and testimony of witnesses and the production of any
evidence that relates to any matter under investigation or in question before the board,
its members or agent conducting the hearing or investigation. Such subpoenas shall be
issued as a matter of right upon the request of either party at any time during the
pendency of a proceeding. Any member of the board, or any agent designated by the board
for such purposes, may administer oaths and affirmations, examine witnesses, and receive
Section 1603. If any witness resides outside of the Commonwealth or through illness or
other cause is unable to testify before the board or its members or agent conducting the
hearing or investigation, his or her testimony or deposition may be taken within or
without this Commonwealth, in such manner and in such forms as the board or its members or
agent conducting the hearing, may by special or general rule prescribe.
Section 1604. In case of contumacy or refusal to obey a subpoena issued to any person
the court, upon application by the board, shall have jurisdiction to issue to such person
an order requiring such person to appear before the board, its members or agents, there to
produce evidence if so ordered, or there to give testimony touching the matter under
investigation or in question, and any failure to obey such order of the courts may be
punished by said court as a contempt thereof. (As affected by Act of April 28, 1978, P. L.
202, No. 53.)
Section 1605. No person shall be excused from attending and testifying or from
producing books, records, correspondence, documents or other evidence in obedience to the
subpoena of the board on the ground that the testimony or evidence required of him may
tend to incriminate him or subject him to a penalty or forfeiture, but no individual shall
be prosecuted or subjected to any penalty or forfeiture for, or on account of, any
transaction, matter or thing concerning which he is compelled, after having claimed his
privilege against self- incrimination, to testify or produce evidence, except that such
individual so testifying shall not be exempt from prosecution and punishment for perjury
committed in so testifying.
Section 1606. Complaints, orders and other process and papers of the board, its members
or agent may be served, either personally or by registered mail or by telegraph or by
leaving a copy thereof at the principal office or place of business of the person required
to be served. The verified return by the individual so serving the same, setting forth the
manner of such service, shall be proof of the same and the return post office receipt or
telegraph receipt thereof when registered and mailed or telegraphed as aforesaid, shall be
proof of service of the same. Witnesses summoned before the board, its members or agent
shall be paid the same fees and mileage that are paid witnesses in the courts of this
Commonwealth, and witnesses whose depositions are taken and the person taking the same
shall severally be entitled to the same fees as are paid for like services in the courts
of this Commonwealth.
Section 1607. Repealed. Act of April 28, 1978, P. L. 202, No. 53. (For disposition of
repealed subject matter, relating to place of service, see Disposition Table preceding
Title 42, Judiciary and Judicial Procedures, of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes
ARTICLE XVII Employe Organizations
Section 1701. No employe organization shall make any contribution out of the funds of
the employe organization either directly or indirectly to any political party or
organization or in support of any political candidate for public office. The board shall
establish such rules and regulations as it may find necessary to prevent the circumvention
or evasion of the provisions of this section. If an employe organization has made
contributions in violation of this section it shall file with the board a report or
affidavit evidencing such contributions within ninety days of the end of its fiscal year.
Such report or affidavit shall be signed by its president and treasurer or corresponding
principals. Any employe organization which violates the provisions of this section or
fails to file any required report or affidavit or files a false report or affidavit shall
be subject to a fine of not more than two thousand dollars ($ 2,000). Any person who
wilfully violates this section, or who makes a false statement knowing it to be false, or
who knowingly fails to disclose a material fact shall be fined not more than one thousand
dollars ($ 1,000) or imprisoned for not more than thirty days or both. Each individual
required to sign affidavits or reports under this section shall be personally responsible
for filing such report or affidavit and for any statement contained therein he knows to be
false. Nothing herein shall be deemed to prohibit voluntary contributions by individuals
to political parties or candidates.
ARTICLE XVIII Conflict of Interest
Section 1801. (a) No person who is a member of the same local, State, national or
international organization as the employe organization with which the public employer is
bargaining or who has an interest in the outcome of such bargaining which interest is in
conflict with the interest of the public employer, shall participate on behalf of the
public employer in the collective bargaining processes with the proviso that such person
may, where entitled, vote on the ratification of an agreement.
(b) Any person who violates subsection (a) of this section shall be immediately removed
by the public employer from his role, if any, in the collective bargaining negotiations or
in any matter in connection with such negotiations.
ARTICLE XIX Penalties
Section 1901. Any person who shall wilfully resist, prevent, impede or interfere with
any member of the board, or any of its agents, in the performance of duties pursuant to
this act, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction thereof, shall be
sentenced to pay a fine of not more than five thousand dollars ($ 5,000), or by
imprisonment for not more than one year, or both.
ARTICLE XX Savings Provisions
Section 2001. The rights granted to certain public employes by the following acts or
parts thereof shall not be repealed or diminished by this act:
(1) Section 24 of the act of August 14, 1963 (P. L. 984), known as the
“Metropolitan Transportation Authorities Act of 1963.”
(2) The act of November 27, 1967 (P. L. 628), entitled “An Act protecting the
rights of employes of existing transportation systems which are acquired by cities of the
third class or any authority thereof or certain joint authorities; requiring cities of the
third class or any authority thereof or any such joint authority to enter into contracts
with labor organizations acting for such employes, and providing for arbitration in case
(3) Section 13.2 of the act of April 6, 1956 (P. L. 1414), known as the “Second
Class County Port Authority Act.”
Section 2002. This act shall not be construed to repeal the act of June 24, 1968 (Act
No. 111), entitled “An act specifically authorizing collective bargaining between
policemen and firemen and their public employers; providing for arbitration in order to
settle disputes, and requiring compliance with collective bargaining agreements and
findings of arbitrators.”
Section 2003. Present provisions of an ordinance of the City of Philadelphia approved
April 4, 1961, entitled “An Ordinance to authorize the Mayor to enter into an
agreement with District Council 33, American Federation of State, County and Municipal
Employes, A. F. L.- C. I. O., Philadelphia and vicinity regrading its representation of
certain City Employes,” which are inconsistent with the provisions of this act shall
remain in full force and effect so long as the present provisions of that ordinance are
valid and operative.
ARTICLE XXI Separability
Section 2101. If any clause, sentence, paragraph or part of this act, or the
application thereof to any person or circumstances, shall, for any reason, be adjudged by
a court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, such judgment shall not affect, impair or
invalidate the remainder of this act and the application of such provision to other
persons or circumstances, but shall be confined in its operation to the clause, sentence,
paragraph, or part thereof, directly involved in the controversy in which such judgment
shall have been rendered and to the person or circumstances involved. It is hereby
declared to be the legislative intent that this act would have been adopted had such
invalid provisions not been included.
ARTICLE XXII Repeals
Section 2201. The act of June 30, 1947 (P. L. 1183), entitled “An act relation to
strikes by public employes; prohibiting such strikes; providing that such employes by
striking terminate their employment; providing for reinstatement under certain conditions;
providing for a grievance procedure; and providing for hearings before civil service and
tenure authorities, and in certain cases before the Pennsylvania Labor Relations
Board,” is hereby repealed as to those public employes covered by the provisions of
this act, and any penalties or other limitations currently in force or presently pending
against any public employes, shall be deemed null and void.
ARTICLE XXIII Effective Date
Section 2301. This act shall take effect in ninety days, except that provisions of
Article V and the amnesty provisions of the repeater shall take effect immediately.