Features, Labor News Briefs, Law and Politics, National, Transportation

Federal Panel Clears Way for United Airlines Union Vote

September 5, 2018

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

WASHINGTON, DC—The National Mediation Board dismissed accusations by United Airlines against UNITE HERE on Aug. 22, clearing the way for 2,700 in-flight catering workers to vote on whether to join the union. UNITE HERE submitted a petition for the vote in January with cards signed by three-fourths of the workers, who prepare and transport food and are United’s only nonunion front-line employees. The airline charged that union organizers had fraudulently obtained signatures by pretending to be representatives of the airline conducting a poll. “There is no evidence that employees did not understand that UNITE HERE was a union and was not a representative of United,” NMB General Counsel Mary Johnson wrote. “Almost universally, employees either signed a card out of a desire to support the organization’s campaign, or they declined to sign a card without feeling pressured.” But she rejected both the union’s request to be certified by card check and United’s that the vote be held at workplaces instead of by telephone and online. “We hope that the election will now be scheduled and conducted expeditiously,” UNITE HERE food-service organizing director Alisa Gallo told Bloomberg News. Read more

September 5, 2018

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