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Sens. Moran, Daines Introduce Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act

Legislation would restore the sovereign status of tribal governments

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and Steve Daines (R-Mont.) – members of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs – introduced the Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act. This legislation would clarify in a technical amendment that the definition of “employers” in the National Labor Relations Act excludes federally-recognized tribal governmental employers on tribally-owned land alongside other governmental employers.

“It is time to correct a decade-old error made by the National Labor Relations Board and once again allow tribal governments, elected by their members, to possess the right to make informed decisions on behalf of those they represent,” said Sen. Moran. “This sensible and narrow bill amends the National Labor Relations Act to exempt tribally-owned entities operated on tribally-owned lands from the NLRB and is supported by more than 160 Indian tribes and tribal corporations. The Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act would rightfully restore the sovereign status of tribal governments, and I will continue working with my colleagues to get this bill to the president’s desk.”

“For far too long, the federal government has infringed on the rights of our tribes in Montana. It’s time the government gets out of the way, and empowers tribes to determine their own destiny and create good-paying jobs for their citizens,” Sen. Daines said.

This legislation is also cosponsored by U.S. Senators Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), James Risch (R-Idaho), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and John Thune (R-S.D.).

Full text of the bill can be found here.

Items to Note:

  • In February 2017, the Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act passed the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs.
  • In September 2017, the United States House of Representatives passed the Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act.

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