Monday, June 28, 2010

Court backs rail and air unions on representation votes

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In a triumph railroad and airline unions, the U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia on Friday turned down an airline industry appeal against new National Mediation Board rules on representation elections. The NMB ruling, announced in May, would reverse a 75-year-old practice by requiring only a majority of those voting—not a majority ifall qualified to vote—to decide a representation election.

The Air Transport Associations said it will “thoroughly study the decision to determine what, if any steps, ATA will take, including exercising our right to appeal the ruling.”

“With today’s court decision, tens of thousands of airline and rail workers are a step closer to pursuing the power of collective bargaining under fairer union election rules,” said Edward Wytkind, president of the Transportation Trades Department of the AFL-CIO. “The deck has been stacked against workers for too long with many union elections being invalidated by unfair rules that required super-majority participation—a standard found nowhere else in our democracy.”