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The presence at an employer's business of one or more employees and/or other persons who are publicizing a labor dispute, influencing employees or customers to withhold their work or business, respectively, or showing a union's desire to represent employees; picketing is usually accompanied by patrolling with signs.


Labor Law; Labor Union.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


n. standing or parading near a business or government office usually with signs of protest or claims in labor disputes or public policy controversies (peace marches to pro- or anti-abortion advocates). Picketing is constitutionally guaranteed as free speech, but in some cases it may be limited by court order to prevent physical combat, blocking of entrances or threats to the public safety.

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.


from the French for ‘pike’, this describes the practice of placing strikers between the worker and his place of work to stop him coming off strike or to encourage him to go on strike. Almost a century of oscillating legislation controls the practice in the UK. Generally, it is permitted if carried out peacefully and with a view to communicating information or persuading persons and is carried out at a person's own place of work. This latter phrase prevents picketing outside the target's garden and restrained the flying picket, someone who would go anywhere to help out workers in a strike even though he himself might not have any dispute with the target. Secondary picketing, where suppliers of the target become themselves targets, is prohibited. While the law generally does not prohibit peaceful picketing, it has not created a right to picket; a picket standing in front of a lorry and obstructing it peacefully to communicate with the driver commits the offence of obstruction. Picketing also must be in accordance with the GOLDEN FORMULAE. Many pickets are not illegal simply for that reason. A code of practice issued by the Secretary of State indicates that there should be no more than six pickets at any entrance or exit and that frequently fewer will be appropriate. Public Order powers may be engaged if more than 20 persons are present.
Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006
References in periodicals archive ?
Foncadas said part of the agreement between Aglo and DLTB management was the 'voluntary' lifting of the picket line.
There were picket lines outside all Merseyside hospitals as junior doctors staged a 48-hour walk-out.
The picket line outside Ainscough depot in Thornaby as part of a national strike
He added: "I can't say exactly how many of our staff were on the picket line because many felt fearful of attending outside the school, so may well have stayed away.
Members of the campus local of the Service Employees International Union brought hot soup from Barry's Espresso & Bakery to the picket lines.
Health workers throughout the region joined pick-out picket lines outside hospitals and ambulance stations in protest at the Government's decision not to give a recommended across the board 1% pay rise.
"I would ask people to respect our picket lines," he said.
This last assessment is especially onerous since it requires the member to pay the union more than the member has actually taken home from crossing the picket line. The amount levied against these two workers in this case by their union was $476.75 each.
Earlier Derek Jones on the picket line at Arrowe Park said consultants and other medical staff who were not part of the industrial action had been out to the picket line during their breaks to show support.
First Minister Carwyn Jones insisted ministers would be at work but would not cross the picket line.
Gove, now 42, was a bespectacled trainee reporter in his early 20s when he helped man a National Union of Journalists picket line during a yearlong row.
They made their views known yesterday on the picket line outside the Bishop Street sorting depot yesterday.