The National Hockey League formally filed an “unfair labor practice” complaint with the National Labor Relations Board against the NHL Players’ Association on Friday. The league is contesting the NHLPA’s apparent policy that any NHLPA member who were to become a replacement player next season would have to pay back the “stipend” he is receiving from the union during the lockout.
Players are receiving approximately $10,000 each month but the PA has reportedly told members that they would be asked to give the money back if they play as a replacement player next season.
NHL executive vice-president Bill Daly called the NHLPA policy “coercive” and in opposing “the players’ rights under the labour laws to decide individually whether to be represented by a union.”
An NHLPA spokesperson had this reaction to the news: “The NHLPA confirms that the NHL has filed an unfair labour practice charge with the U.S. National Labor Relations Board. The NHLPA will have no further comment while the matter is reviewed by the NLRB other than to say we are confident the NHL’s actions and allegations are without merit.”