Unfair labor complaint filed against Notre Dame over athletes


SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — An unfair labor complaint was filed Thursday against the University of Notre Dame for classifying college athletes as “student-athletes.”

The complaint was filed with the National Labor Relations Board by a California-based group calling itself the College Basketball Players Association. It said Notre Dame is engaging in unfair labor practices as defined by the National Labor Relations Act.

The complaint is similar to one filed against University of Southern California last May by the NLRB’s Los Angeles office alleging players on USC’s football and men’s and women’s basketball teams are employees and not “student-athletes” within the meaning of the National Labor Relations Act.

Notre Dame cited its Statement for Principles for Intercollegiate Athletics in responding to a request for comment on the complaint, saying athletics is “an integrated participant in and contributor to the University’s education mission … .”

“Clearly, Notre Dame’s athletic programs are part of — not separate from — our broader educational mission,” the school said. “We will vigorously defend our approach to ensuring that being a ‘student-athlete” describes precisely the educational and developmental experience our students receive at Notre Dame.”

A ruling by a regional NLRB director in February paved the way for the Dartmouth men’s basketball team to vote to join in union last month, though the school is challenging the ruling.

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