No NFL Union; What Does This Mean?
• Because a fair, new Collective Bargaining Agreement was unable to be reached by the expiration of the current contract, the NFLPA, to best serve its members, has renounced its status as a union in order to block the impending lockout by the owners of the NFL.
• By disclaiming interest, the NFLPA no longer represents the players in collective bargaining with the NFL. The collective bargaining process proved futile due to the owners’ desire to implement a lockout, and the players must take new action to fight to keep the 2011 season on track.
• As shown by a March 1 ruling by Judge David Doty, the NFL has been actively strategizing for a lockout of the players for more than two years. The NFL negotiated contracts with TV networks to provide over $4 billion in 2011to the NFL even if the owners shut down the League and no games are played in 2011. A federal judge decided that the purpose of the NFL’s deliberate actions was to “advance its own interests and harm the interests of the players.”
• The NFL left the players no choice. The protections afforded by federal anti-trust laws that prohibit illegal corporate behavior now offer the players the best chance to prevent a lockout and protect themselves and their families. Under federal law, the players understand that they must relinquish union affiliation to pursue their anti-trust case.
• Any agreement reached from this point forward with the NFL will be as a result of the court system, not a collective bargaining agreement.
• Disclaiming interest is the last ditch effort by the players to save the 2011 season.