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Report: Media Matters lawyers up in response to SEIU petition

Media Matters for America and the Service International Employees Union Local 500 are facing off in a labor dispute, the Washington Examiner reports.

The SEIU branch, which covers Maryland and Washington D.C., filed a representation petition last week with the National Labor Relations Board.

The petition shows that Media Matters, a progressive media watchdog, hired lawyers from the firm Perkins Coie to represent it, indicating that the group is providing some resistance to the unionization attempt.

The website for the National Labor Relations Board, which decides whether unions can represent workers, explains that employees or unions can file a representation petition after signatures are gathered from at least 30 percent of employees in a given unit.

“In addition to NLRB-conducted elections, federal law provides employees a second path to choose a representative: They may persuade an employer to voluntarily recognize a union after showing majority support by signed authorization cards or other means,” says the NLRB’s website.

Though the docket for the petition provides no detail, Media Matters’ resistance is ironic given its opposition to conservatives who have been critical of unionization attempts.

The progressive outlet routinely criticizes Fox News and other conservative outlets that push back against labor issues. They’ve also targeted conservatives who have been critical of SEIU’s organization tactics.

Media Matters told Gawker, “We respect the rights of our employees and will work through this process.”

None of the parties taking part in the petition — Media Matters, SEIU Local 500, or Perkins Coie — responded to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

Update: “Based on their track record we have every reason to believe they’ll do the right thing,” Dave Rodich, executive director for the SEIU Local 500, told TheDCNF.

Rodich said that MMFA employees were behind the decision to organize and that the petition pertains to the entire staff rather than an isolated unit. Representation petitions are sometimes filed in cases where employers do not voluntarily agree to organization efforts, Rodich said.

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