505 F.2d 542 (3rd Cir. 1974), 74-1122, United Transp. Union v. Penn Cent. Transp. Co.

Docket Nº74-1122.
Citation505 F.2d 542
Party NameUNITED TRANSPORTATION UNION, Appellant, v. PENN CENTRAL TRANSPORTATION COMPANY et al.
Case DateOctober 23, 1974
CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

Page 542

505 F.2d 542 (3rd Cir. 1974)

UNITED TRANSPORTATION UNION, Appellant,

v.

PENN CENTRAL TRANSPORTATION COMPANY et al.

No. 74-1122.

United States Court of Appeals, Third Circuit

October 23, 1974

Argued Sept. 11, 1974.

Cornelius C. O'Brien, Jr., G. Sander Davis, Philadelphia, Pa., for appellant.

Herman M. Wells, Richard N. Clattenburg, Philadelphia, Pa., for appellees.

Before ALDISERT, ADAMS and ROSENN, Circuit Judges.

Page 543

OPINION

PER CURIAM.

This appeal by the United Transportation Union (Union), bargaining representative of certain trainmen (including conductors, brakemen, and locomotive firemen) employed by the Penn Central Transportation Company (Company), is from the order of the District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania denying injunctive relief against the Company's abolition of certain work assignments of its employees. The effect of these changes, the district court found, would make overtime work the rule rather than the exception at certain of the Company's yards. 1 The Union contends that this action of the Company has generated a 'major' dispute under the Railway Labor Act, 45 U.S.C. 151 et seq. (1970), and that an injunction should issue to maintain the status quo pending the dispute's resolution. The Union further contends that, even if the dispute in question were classified as 'minor,' the district court erred in holding that since the dispute had not been submitted to the Adjustment Board, and since the Union was seeking such relief independently of any suit for equitable relief by the Company, it did not have the power to issue an injunction to maintain the status quo.

When the nature of a dispute is 'major' under the Railway Labor Act, supra, neither party may change the status quo without complying with the procedures of section 6 of the Act. 2 An injunction may be issued to protect that status quo. United Transp. Union v. Burlington-Northern, Inc.,458 F.2d 354, 357 (8th Cir. 1972). Thus, if the dispute in question is 'major,' the district court erred in not granting the injunction.

After carefully considering the record, briefs, and oral argument, we agree with the district court that this is not a 'major' dispute under the Railway Labor Act. This court, in Baker v. United Transportation Union, 455 F.2d 149, 154 n. 11 (3d Cir. 1971), has characterized the distinction between 'major' and 'minor' disputes as follows:

Under the Act, a major dispute is one arising out of the formation or change of collective agreements covering rates of pay, rules, or working conditions. Elgin, J. & E.R. Co. v. Burley, 325 U.S. 711, 722-727, 65 S.Ct. 1282 (89 L.Ed. 1886) (1945). A minor dispute involves the interpretation or application of a collective agreement and under 3 of the Act is subject to binding interpretation by the Railway Adjustment Board. Elgin, J. & E.R. Co., supra, at 722-727, 65 S.Ct. 1282.

The Union vigorously contends that the abolition of certain job assignments by the Company, thereby causing 'the remaining crews to work substantial overtime on a regular basis,' is in contravention of three provisions of the collective bargaining agreements 'which if allowed to continue would represent a clear attempt to change the collective bargaining agreements as far as working

Page 544

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38 practice notes
  • 433 F.Supp. 1087 (S.D.N.Y. 1977), 77 Civ. 2913, International Ass'n of Machinists & Aerospace Workers, AFL-CIO (IAM) v. Compagnie Nationale Air France
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 2nd Circuit
    • July 1, 1977
    ...45 U.S.C. s 184. Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway Co. v. Burley, supra; United Transportation Union v. Penn Central Transportation Co., 505 F.2d 542, 543-44 (3d Cir. 1974); Local 1477, United Transportation Union v. Baker, 482 F.2d 228, 230 (6th Cir. 1973); International Association of M......
  • 576 F.2d 1367 (9th Cir. 1978), 76-2949, Magnuson v. Burlington Northern, Inc.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
    • June 12, 1978
    ...of the grievance mechanisms established by the R.L.A. (See, e. g., United Transp. Union v. Penn Central Transp. Co. (3d Cir. 1974) 505 F.2d 542, 544-45 ("not obviously insubstantial"); Local 1477, United Transp. Union v. Baker (6th Cir. 1973) 482 F.2d 228, 230 (both tests used); R......
  • 845 F.2d 420 (3rd Cir. 1988), 87-3797, Railway Labor Executives' Ass'n v. Pittsburgh & Lake Erie R. Co.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
    • April 8, 1988
    ...unless and until the interpretation is held invalid by the Adjustment Board. See, e.g., United Transp. Union v. Penn Cent. Transp. Co., 505 F.2d 542, 545 (3d Cir.1974); Maine Cent. R.R. v. United Transp. Union, 787 F.2d 780, 781 (1st Cir.), cert. denied, --- U.S. ----, 107 S.Ct. 169, 93 L.E......
  • 879 F.2d 990 (2nd Cir. 1989), 1554, CSX Transp., Inc. v. United Transp. Union
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
    • June 7, 1989
    ...justification for its actions is 'obviously insubstantial.' " Local 553, 695 F.2d at 673 (quoting UTU v. Penn Central Transp. Co., 505 F.2d 542, 544 (3d Cir.1974) (per curiam)). A dispute will be considered minor, on the other hand, if the contract is "reasonably susceptible"......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
38 cases
  • 433 F.Supp. 1087 (S.D.N.Y. 1977), 77 Civ. 2913, International Ass'n of Machinists & Aerospace Workers, AFL-CIO (IAM) v. Compagnie Nationale Air France
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 2nd Circuit
    • July 1, 1977
    ...45 U.S.C. s 184. Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway Co. v. Burley, supra; United Transportation Union v. Penn Central Transportation Co., 505 F.2d 542, 543-44 (3d Cir. 1974); Local 1477, United Transportation Union v. Baker, 482 F.2d 228, 230 (6th Cir. 1973); International Association of M......
  • 576 F.2d 1367 (9th Cir. 1978), 76-2949, Magnuson v. Burlington Northern, Inc.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
    • June 12, 1978
    ...of the grievance mechanisms established by the R.L.A. (See, e. g., United Transp. Union v. Penn Central Transp. Co. (3d Cir. 1974) 505 F.2d 542, 544-45 ("not obviously insubstantial"); Local 1477, United Transp. Union v. Baker (6th Cir. 1973) 482 F.2d 228, 230 (both tests used); R......
  • 845 F.2d 420 (3rd Cir. 1988), 87-3797, Railway Labor Executives' Ass'n v. Pittsburgh & Lake Erie R. Co.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
    • April 8, 1988
    ...unless and until the interpretation is held invalid by the Adjustment Board. See, e.g., United Transp. Union v. Penn Cent. Transp. Co., 505 F.2d 542, 545 (3d Cir.1974); Maine Cent. R.R. v. United Transp. Union, 787 F.2d 780, 781 (1st Cir.), cert. denied, --- U.S. ----, 107 S.Ct. 169, 93 L.E......
  • 879 F.2d 990 (2nd Cir. 1989), 1554, CSX Transp., Inc. v. United Transp. Union
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
    • June 7, 1989
    ...justification for its actions is 'obviously insubstantial.' " Local 553, 695 F.2d at 673 (quoting UTU v. Penn Central Transp. Co., 505 F.2d 542, 544 (3d Cir.1974) (per curiam)). A dispute will be considered minor, on the other hand, if the contract is "reasonably susceptible"......
  • Request a trial to view additional results