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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 ?
the right, if there be such a right, of the respondents to engage in secondary picketing ...
The Court hastily dismissed the argument that its application of section 8(b)(4) to ILA's boycott "infringe[s] upon the First Amendment rights of the ILA and its members." (182) Since the Court "ha[d] consistently rejected the claim that secondary picketing by labor unions ...
In short, it would be difficult to show that a blanket prohibition on union secondary activity is necessary to protect the public interest and to prevent commercial unrest, particularly in cases where the activity is secondary picketing that calls for a consumer boycott.
Sir, - During the 1980s the then Tory government brought in a new law regarding secondary picketing making it illegal for any body of people to picket or blockade any firm or business of which they were not employed.
However, the secondary picketing legislation introduced under Margaret Thatcher would not be applicable in these protests, as it relates only to official union actions.
WHEN students protest because their teachers are on strike, it's a curious case of secondary picketing.
Yesterday, Ogle said he could not rule out more secondary picketing at bus and DART stations.
Unlike the miners in 1984, the police are not engaging in unlawful or secondary picketing or disruption of people going about their business.
#Unions: The Prime Minister is facing years of confrontation with the unions over rights to secondary picketing and pensions.
It's inconceivable any sane politician would give a second thought to the TUC conference demands for a return to secondary picketing. It was precisely that tactic that allowed unions to make Britain ungovernable in the 1970s, and if that is the best the our fraternal brethren can do, they would be better off keeping their collective mouth shut.
Ever since secondary picketing was made illegal, a worker supporting another worker has more or less been branded a criminal.