It has been accurately observed that a single sentence in a terse ruling issued last week by the general counsel of the National Labor Relations Board has the potential to bring U.S. labor law into sync with the 21st century.
The ruling involves at least 43 labor violation cases filed against McDonald’s since November 2012. (Another 64 are pending.) In those 43 cases, the general counsel ruled that it will treat McDonald’s as the workers’ “joint employer,” along with its franchisees. They can be judged jointly accountable for workplace conditions.