Airline Management Newsletter - March 2011


In this issue: Trial Court Must Modify Injunction to Condition Relief on Union's Request to NMB for Determination of Representative of Frontier Mechanics; Second Circuit Rejects Former Flight Attendant's RLA Discharge Claim; Fifth Circuit Finds USERRA does not Permit Harassment Claims; House to Consider Legislation Reversing NMB Voting Rule; Modification of NMB Procedures; and Recent NMB Results.

Excerpt from 'Trial Court Must Modify Injunction to Condition Relief on Union's Request to NMB for Determination of Representative of Frontier Mechanics':

The Seventh Circuit recently answered in a novel way a question under the Railway Labor Act (RLA). The question was presented to it when a federal trial court issued an injunction prohibiting Frontier Airlines from altering unilaterally its mechanics' pay, work rules or working conditions unless and until the National Mediation Board (NMB) rules, as part of a single carrier case, that the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) is not the mechanics' lawful representative as a consequence of the operational integration of Frontier and Republic Airways Holdings' (RAH) other air carrier subsidiaries. Recognizing the RLA does not permit an employer to seek such a determination from the NMB, and that IBT had no incentive to do so, the Seventh Circuit noted that the trial court's injunction essentially maintained the representation status of what may well be an illegal minority union. Accordingly, the Seventh Circuit ordered the trial court to modify the injunction to condition its continuance "on the union's prompt application to the Board for a ruling on the representation of Frontier's mechanics: are they represented by the union, or by no one?" See International Brotherhood of Teamsters Airline Division v. Frontier Airlines, Inc. and Republic Airways Holding, Inc. (7th Cir. Dec. 13. 2010).

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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