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Works of Franklin D. Roosevelt

Creation of the First National Labor Relations Board. Executive Order No. 6763.

June 29, 1934

Publishing Information
  1. By virtue of and pursuant to the authority vested in me under Title I of the National Industrial Recovery Act (ch. 90, 48 Stat. 195, Tit. 15, U.S.C., sec. 701) and under Joint Resolution approved June 19, 1934 (Public Res. 44, 73d Congress), and in order to effectuate the policy of said Title and the purposes of the said Joint Resolution, it is hereby ordered as follows:

    CREATION OF THE NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS BOARD

  2. SECTION 1(a) There is hereby created in connection with the Department of Labor a board to be known as the National Labor Relations Board (hereinafter referred to as the Board), which shall be composed of Lloyd Garrison of Wisconsin, Chairman, Henry Alvin Millis of Illinois, and Edwin S. Smith of Massachusetts. ...

    ORIGINAL JURISDICTION OF THE BOARD

  3. SECTION 2. The Board is hereby authorized

  4. (a) To investigate issues, facts, practices, and activities of employers or employees in any controversies arising under Section 7(a) of the National Industrial Recovery Act or which are burdening or obstructing, or threatening to burden or obstruct, the free flow of interstate commerce; and

  5. (b) To order and conduct elections and on its own initiative to take steps to enforce its orders in the manner provided in Section 2 of Public Resolution 44, 73d Congress; and

  6. (c) Whenever it is in the public interest, to hold hearings and make findings of fact regarding complaints of discrimination against or discharge of employees or other alleged violations of Section 7(a) of the National Industrial Recovery Act and such parts of any code or agreement as incorporate said Section; and

  7. (d)To prescribe, with the approval of the President, such rules and regulations as are authorized by Section 3 of Public Resolution 44, 73d Congress, and to recommend to the President such other rules and regulations relating to collective bargaining, labor representation, and labor elections as the President is authorized to prescribe by Section 10(a) of the National Industrial Recovery Act.

  8. (e) Upon the request of the parties to a labor dispute, to act as a Board of Voluntary Arbitration or to select a person or agency for voluntary arbitration.

    RELATIONSHIP TO OTHER LABOR BOARDS

  9. SECTION 3(a) The Board is hereby authorized and directed-

  10. (1) To study the activities of such boards as have been or may hereafter be created to deal with industrial or labor relations, in order to report through the Secretary of Labor to the President whether such boards should be designated as special boards and given the powers that the President is authorized to confer by Public Resolution 44, 73d Congress; and

  11. (2) To recommend, through the Secretary of Labor, to the President the establishment, whenever necessary, of "Regional Labor Relations Boards" and special labor boards for particular Industries vested with the powers that the President is authorized to confer by Public Resolution 44, 73d Congress; and

  12. (3) To receive from such regional, industrial, and special boards as may be designated or established under the two preceding sub-sections reports of their activities and to review or hear appeals from such boards in cases in which (1) the board recommends review or (2) there is a division of opinion in the board or (3) the National Labor Relations Board deems review will serve the public interest.
  13. (b) The National Labor Board created by Executive Order of August 5, 1933, and continued by Executive Order No. 6511 of December 16, 1933, shall cease to exist on July 9, 1934; and each local or regional labor board, established under the authority of section 2(b) of the said Executive Order of December 16, 1933, if it is not designated in accordance with subsection 3(a)(1) of this order, shall cease to exist at such time as the National Labor Relations Board shall determine. The National Labor Relations Board shall have authority to conduct all investigations and proceedings being conducted by boards that are abolished by this subsection; and all records, papers, and property of such boards shall become records, papers, and property of the National Labor Relations Board....

    RELATIONSHIP TO OTHER EXECUTIVE AGENCIES

  14. (c) The National Labor Relations Board may decline to take cognizance of any labor dispute where there is another means of settlement provided for by agreement, industrial code, or law which has not been utilized.

  15. (d) Whenever the National Labor Relations Board or any board designated or established in accordance with subsections 3(a)(1) or 3(a)(2) of this order has taken, or has announced its intention to take, jurisdiction of any case or controversy involving either section 7(a) of the National Industrial Recovery Act or Public Resolution 44, 73d Congress, no other person or agency in the executive branch of the Government, except upon the request of the National Labor Relations Board, or except as otherwise provided in subsection 3(a)(3) of this order, shall take, or continue to entertain, jurisdiction of such case or controversy.

  16. (e) Whenever the National Labor Relations Board or any board designated or established in accordance with subsections 3(a)(1) or 3(a)(2) of this order has made a finding of facts, or issued any order in any case or controversy involving section 7(a) of the National Industrial Recovery Act or Public Resolution 44, 73d Congress, such finding of facts and such order shall (except as otherwise provided in subsection 3(a)(3) of this order or except as otherwise recommended by the National Labor Relations Board) be final and not subject to review by any person or agency in the executive branch of the Government.

  17. (f) Nothing in this order shall prevent, impede or diminish in any way the right of employees to strike or engage in other concerted activities.

    (See following Item and note.)

    Statement by the President Accompanying the Foregoing Executive Order

    June 30, 1934

  18. THE Executive Order that I have just issued carries out the mandate of Congress, as expressed in Public Resolution No. 44, 73d Congress, approved June 19, 1934. It establishes upon a firm statutory basis the additional machinery by which the United States Government will deal with labor relations, and particularly with difficulties arising in connection with collective bargaining, labor elections and labor representation.

  19. For many weeks, but particularly during the last ten days, officials of the Department of Labor, the National Recovery Administration and the National Labor Board have been in conference with me and with each other on this subject. It has been our common objective to find an agency or agencies suitable for the disposition of these difficult problems, and after making such selection to make clear to the public how this machinery works and how it can be utilized in the interest of maintaining orderly industrial relations and justice as between employers, employees and the general public, and enforcing the statutes and other provisions of law that relate to collective bargaining and similar labor relations.

  20. The Executive Order creates in connection with the Department of Labor, but not subject to the judicial supervision of the Secretary of Labor, a National Labor Relations Board composed of three impartial persons, each of whom will receive a salary of $10,000 a year. This Board is given the power to make investigations, to hold labor elections, to hear cases of discharge of employees and to act as voluntary arbitrator. In addition, the Board is authorized to recommend to the President that in such cases as they deem it desirable, existing labor boards such as the industrial boards already created in the cotton textile industry or the petroleum industry, and such as the various Regional Labor Boards, should be reestablished under the authority of the Joint Resolution just passed by Congress and approved by me on June 19, 1934; and also to recommend that additional boards of a similar character should be newly created. Whenever any regional, industrial or special board is established or created under the authority of the Joint Resolution it will report for administrative purposes to the National Labor Relations Board, but the decisions of the regional, industrial or special boards will be subject to review by the National Board only where it is clear that such review will serve the public interest. Furthermore, the Board can utilize and refer cases to suitable State or local tribunals.

  21. The existing National Labor Board is by this Executive Order abolished, effective July 9, 1934, but the new National Labor Relations Board will have the benefit of the expert personnel of the old Board and of such of the subordinate regional labor boards as it may deem necessary. The new Board will have the advantages of the experience of the old Board....

  22. One of the most important features of the new arrangement is that the National Labor Relations Board and all subordinate boards will make regular reports through the Secretary of Labor to the President.... Reports furnished regularly in this manner will be invaluable in the event that any permanent legislation is later contemplated and in developing a systematic knowledge of the general character of the labor relations problems in the United States of America, which must be justly and expeditiously handled.

  23. The very presence of this Board and any boards it may authorize will have undoubtedly a salutary effect in making it possible for individual conciliators to arrive at settlements of local grievances promptly. Indeed it is my hope that so far as possible adjustment in labor relations and the correction of labor abuses can be effectively made at the source of the dispute without bringing the parties before national authorities located in Washington....

  24. This Executive Order, I believe, marks a great step forward in administrative efficiency and, more important, in governmental policy in labor matters. It meets the universal demand not only of employers and employees, but of the public, that the machinery for adjusting labor relations should be clarified so that every person may know where to turn for the adjustment of grievances.