HR Terminology Yellow Dog Contract

Complygate has put together a complete list of key HR terms, phrases, acronyms and jargon to assist HR professionals in navigating the extensive, ever-growing HR terminology. We would like to encourage you to read, share and make use of this terminology collection. If you have any suggestions of terms or keywords we have missed, please contact us and we will include them in our next update.

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What is a Yellow Dog Contract?

Yellow Dog Contract definition

Yellow dog contracts also called "yellow-dog clauses" or "ironclad oaths", are cases where employees agree, as part of their employment conditions, not to join union relations or become a member of a union.

When were Yellow Dog Contracts used?

Yellow Dog Contracts were used widely until the 1930s as a strategy to prevent organised union protests and offered a way for companies to chase union organisers in a legal way.

However, since 1932, yellow-dog contracts are not implementable backing the passing of the Norris-LaGuardia Act (Section 3) in that same year.

When did the term “Yellow Dog” appear?

The word ‘yellow dog’ began to emerge in the 1920s as a comparison for what any person signing it would lessen themselves too by forgoing significant constitutional rights.

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