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USW Local 363 Violates Workers Rights!
In a December 8, 2008 decision and order the National Labor Relations Board found Local 363 United Service Workers violated the Federal labor law and ordered them to not act as the collective bargaining representative of the employees of Matros Automated Electrical Construction Corp. unless and until they are certified by the Board as the collective bargaining representative of such employees.
The decision and order resulted from charges filed by Local 3 IBEW against both Local 363 and Matros for interfering in a Board election which was to decide who the employees of Matros wanted as their collective bargaining representative.
While the election outcome was pending, Local 363 entered into an agreement with Matros. In addition to signing the agreement both Matros and Local 363 threatened and interrogated employees of Matros as to what union they wanted to represent them. This resulted in intimidation by Local 363 and the employer regarding the choice the workers were to make. Under the labor law employers and rival unions do not have the right to interfere with a workers free choice of representation.
Local 363 was also ordered not to threaten employees nor cause their discharge if they do not sign applications to become members of Local 363. This was ordered regarding BTZ Electric, a company Local 3 had alleged was an alter ego of Matros.
Local 363 was also ordered to reimburse all former and present employees of Matros for all initiation fees, dues and other moneys extracted from them, with interest.
“This is the first violation we have demonstrated against the most recent incarnation of Local 363. In the past Local 363 has been affiliated with the Teamsters and other independent unions. It demonstrates that once again even though the leadership of Local 363 has changed it is primarily an employer dominated organization dedicated to protect the employer – from being organized by Local 3, IBEW,” states Business Manager Christopher Erikson.
During the course of the campaign Matros’ owner Stuart Moskowitz interrogated his employees regarding which union they favored. He made statements to the effect that he would never sign an agreement with Local 3, IBEW and if he had to he would close up shop rather than enter into an agreement. He invited representatives of Local 363 USW to attend and address his employees and encouraged them to select Local 363 over Local 3.
In addition he took economic action against those employees who supported Local 3. In some cases he refused to give them raises while giving raises to every other employee and fired a number of Local 3 supporters.
The order and decision against Matros also requires him to make whole all of the Local 3 supporters he acted against economically.