the Brotherhood as the bargaining agent by the Railroad was 'obviously unjustified, an arbitrary assumption of authority and a direct violation' of the Railway Labor Act, 45 U.S.C.A. § 151 et seq.
Thereafter, on March 24, 1943, the National Mediation Board in Case No. R-1022, after investigation, certified the Brotherhood of Railway and Steamship Clerks as the duly designated and authorized agency to represent the employees of the defendant railroad.
From the facts as they thus appear, it seems evident that both of the bargaining agencies had or adopted the same rules governing the release by furlough of married women whose husbands were employed. The Association specifically set forth those rules in the supplement of 1933 and the amendment thereto in 1936, and the Brotherhood by implication as well as by direct oral reference adopted them. Until 1943, however, when the National Mediation Board recognized the Brotherhood as supplanting the Association as the employee's bargaining agent, it would seem apparent that the Brotherhood had no de jure standing as a representative agent, indeed the Dooley case, supra, so held.
Nevertheless, whether one or the other of the agencies is sought to be established as the proper and authorized representative of the employees is not of great moment at this time, the court having found that both agencies had the same agreements governing the employment of married women. Under either, the outcome is the same. Until the rules relating to the employment of married women were suspended in 1943 and finally abrogated in 1945, they remained in full force and effect and were binding on this complainant as well as on the defendant, even though she individually suffered some hurt as a result. Such a collective bargaining agreement is the joint and several contract of the members of the union, made by the officers of the union as their agents, and is enforceable against one for whose general benefit such agreement was made, even though it resulted in no benefit to such individual. Hartley v. Brotherhood of Railway and Steamship Clerks, etc., 283 Mich. 201, 277 N.W. 885.
The court is satisfied, from the evidence adduced at the trial of the issues herein, that the complainant's initial release from service was in accordance with and in compliance with the rules governing the employment of married women under the 1933 supplementary agreement and the amendments thereto in 1936, and that her release was in the nature of a furlough rather than a discharge from service. During such period of furlough, Mrs. Schlenk retained such seniority rights as she had on the date of her release on February 15, 1939. She retained as well her pension rights as of that date. During such period as the complainant was properly on the furlough lists she acquired no additional rights or advanced seniority standing. Until the date of the temporary suspension of the said married women's rules, complainant's status as a furloughed employee was proper and in no way a violation of her rights under Association or Brotherhood employee's agreements with the defendant, Lehigh Valley Railroad.
On the date when the said rules were temporarily suspended (the exact date does not appear) Mrs. Schlenk became entitled to restoration to her former position with the defendant company in accordance with the order of her seniority standing. At that time she became entitled to restoration, retaining all the rights she had on the date of her furlough in 1939. Since the evidence relating to the complainant's standing in the order of recall to service, and evidence of any improper placements of persons of a lessor seniority status, does not appear before the court, no final determination of the precise date on which Mrs. Schlenk should have been reinstated can be made and hence no final determination of pecuniary loss may be made. Since these questions are matters capable of exact calculation, in view of the above determination, counsel will prepare an agreed stipulation of fact pertaining to the questions left undetermined. There will further be taken into consideration in mitigation of such monies found to be due Mrs. Schlenk under these determinations, such sums as she may have earned in other occupations during the time when she may be found to have been entitled to reinstatement, in accordance with the court's finding. Upon the filing of such stipulation, a final determination of this matter will be made and an order for judgment may then be submitted.
© 1992-2004 VersusLaw Inc.