The Mashantucket Employment Rights Office (MERO) is an agency of the MPTN whose structure and function are established pursuant to the Mashantucket Employment Rights Law, Title 31 M.P.T.L.. In addition, the law provides for the establishment of a MERO mediation panel comprised of qualified members of the Tribe's Peacemaker's Council to mediate labor or employment disputes. The law charges the MERO with fulfilling all responsibilities assigned to it by Tribal laws regulating employment on the Reservation. Currently, the MERO oversees enforcement of the Mashantucket Pequot Labor Relations Law and the Tribal and Native American Preference Law.
The MPLRL generally provides Tribal employees with the right to refrain from or engage in union affiliation or organization, or other protected, concerted activities. The MERO's responsibilities include overseeing the processing of (1) petitions for union elections, (2) charges that may be brought against a union or Tribal employer relating to union organizing, collective bargaining or other issues covered by the law, and (3) collective bargaining cases where the parties are unable to reach agreement on a contract, and impasse resolution is requested.
The Preference Law establishes mechanisms for making certain that Native Americans who meet the minimum necessary qualifications receive preference in
certain employment opportunities on the Reservation. When the Tribe is the Employer, preference in employment opportunities must be provided first to Tribal
Members, next to Spouses of Tribal Members and third to Native Americans who are not Tribal Members. Generally, employment opportunities include hire, transfer,
training, promotion and retention. In addition, when the Tribe is the employer, Tribal Members and Spouses of Tribal members receive advance notification of
position openings and preference in shift assignments for open positions, and all preference categories receive accommodations for cultural convictions unique
to the individual's Native American culture if an accommodation does not cause the employer hardship.
If the employer is not the Tribe, preference in employment opportunities is required to be given to members of any federally recognized Indian Tribe who live on or near a reservation. Generally, employment opportunities include hire, transfer, training, promotion and retention.
The MERO's responsibilities include (1) establishing and monitoring requirements for employer compliance with the law and (2) receiving and investigating complaints, and imposing remedies for noncompliance.
Finding Information Through this Web Site
For additional information about each law, including applicable regulations, manuals, and forms, please follow the link for the applicable law. Documents on this web site are regularly updated, so please check back frequently. For the latest MERO developments, click on MERO News and Updates.
Some cases are required to be filed within certain specific time periods. For example, an individual who wishes to file a claim because of an employer's non-compliance with the Preference Law must file the claim within 180 days of the event of claimed non-compliance. Please review carefully the specifics of each law and case filing procedures that may be found on this web site or call the MERO for additional information.
DISCLAIMER: The MERO maintains information on this web site to enhance public access to the MERO's information. This service is continually under development and while the MERO attempts to maintain timely and accurate information on the site, there are no guarantees. For additional assistance or questions, please contact the MERO office.