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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.


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.


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.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Union has maintained a 24/7 picket line since August 27.
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.
a one-year suspension of membership for each day the member crossed the picket line (affiliation discipline), and
A scheduled session of the National Assembly for Wales will go ahead in Cardiff, but with the majority of seats left empty as Labour and Plaid AMs refuse to cross strikers' picket lines.
A woman who remembers him from the NUJ dispute over union recognition, which spanned 1989 and 1990, said: "He was constantly on the picket line and involved in marches.
Peter Harris, PCS Wales Secretary, was encouraged by the support from AMs who said they would not cross the picket line.
We have had a good-humoured picket line and we have had a lot of support from the public.
Speaking from the picket line, Ian Dovey, 46, new claims assistant at JobCentre Plus and assistant branch secretary for Coventry and Warwickshire PCS branch, said: "We've had hardly anyone cross the picket line.
But I left both of these lively little picket lines feeling energized.
Another topic of the meeting was picket line etiquette.
Radio 2 presenter Terry Wogan wished people on the picket line 'good luck' as he went inside Broadcasting House in London.