College athlete labor decision: a government document

Do you remember reading about college athletes in the news earlier this semester?

In August, news sources across the country reported on a decision about Northwestern University football players who petitioned to form a union and, essentially, to be recognized as employees. That decision came from the National Labor Relations Board, or NLRB.

You’ll find a record for electronically-published NLRB decisions in the Consortium Library catalog; that record provides links to the NLRB Cases & Decisions website. As a participant of the Federal Depository Library Program, the Consortium Library provides access to government publications such as NLRB decisions.

Why might you want to follow that link to view this kind of government document for yourself? This particular NLRB decision is 19 pages long, and it is a detailed document that can’t be fully represented by a 30-second news clip or a 300-word news article. There’s no substitute for reading the full text for yourself. Also, locating the full text from its original source can lead you to related sources — in this case, the many other documents NLRB has pertaining to this issue. Following these kinds of breadcrumbs is key to doing thorough research.

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