Elon Law professor quoted in story on Asheville hospital union drive

Associate Professor Eric Fink spoke with the Citizen Times in Asheville for a March 14, 2020, story about an upcoming vote by nurses to form a union at western North Carolina's largest hospital.

An Elon Law professor with an expertise in labor law was a featured expert for an Asheville Citizen Times story on efforts by nurses to form a union at a regional hospital.

Associate Professor Eric Fink spoke with reporter Brian Gordon for a March 14 report on a forthcoming union election at Mission Hospital, the largest hospital in western North Carolina.

Fink said that employers can limit the size, number or placement of red buttons that have a check mark with “Vote Yes” for legitimate business reasons. Nurses should be allowed to wear buttons, he said, and management can impose reasonable restrictions for legitimate business reasons.

And while wearing buttons is permissible, Fink said, distributing them at the hospital itself can be prohibited. “The law distinguishes between solicitations and distributions,” Fink said. “Management has much more latitude in restricting distributions, especially in work areas, because it can be argued to be disruptive.”

At Elon Law, Fink teaches professional responsibility, employment law, consumer law, and cause lawyering. He has also taught civil procedure, labor law, and business associations. His research examines legal problems and institutions from a sociological perspective.