McCarthy v. National RR Passenger Corp., Civ. A. No. 88-1551-Mc.

CourtUnited States District Courts. 1st Circuit. United States District Courts. 1st Circuit. District of Massachusetts
Writing for the CourtMcNAUGHT
Citation712 F. Supp. 5
PartiesJames Robert McCARTHY, Frank Richard Newcomb, Paul O'Riley, and Railway Labor Executives' Association, Plaintiffs, v. NATIONAL RAILROAD PASSENGER CORPORATION, Defendant.
Decision Date01 May 1989
Docket NumberCiv. A. No. 88-1551-Mc.

712 F. Supp. 5

James Robert McCARTHY, Frank Richard Newcomb, Paul O'Riley, and Railway Labor Executives' Association, Plaintiffs,
v.
NATIONAL RAILROAD PASSENGER CORPORATION, Defendant.

Civ. A. No. 88-1551-Mc.

United States District Court, D. Massachusetts.

May 1, 1989.


John O'B. Clarke, Jr. and L. Pat Wynns, Highsaw & Mahoney, P.C., Washington, D.C., and Robert T. Naumes, Malone & Naumes, Boston, Mass., for plaintiffs.

Jonathan I. Saperstein and Sally D. Garr, National R.R. Passenger Corp., Washington,

712 F. Supp. 6
D.C., William Shaw McDermott and Robert B. Allensworth, McDermott & Rizzo, Boston, Mass., for defendant

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

McNAUGHT, District Judge.

This matter comes before the Court on the parties' cross-motions for summary judgment. After the hearing, the matter was taken under advisement.

In the amended complaint, plaintiffs allege that defendant, National Railroad Passenger Corporation ("AMTRAK"), has violated the Railway Labor Act ("RLA") by taking reprisals against certain Amtrak employees who left their jobs at the Boston Engine Terminal on May 24, 1988. Defendant Amtrak asserts that the employees engaged in illegal strike activity in protest of the institution of a drug testing policy by defendant. The alleged reprisals included the discharge of plaintiff McCarthy, an employee of Amtrak who had been spokesperson for United Shop Crafts, an organization of the local chairmen of the seven shop craft union organizations at the Boston Engine Terminal which was formed to facilitate communications between the unions and management on issues concerning the unions. Defendant says that McCarthy had called a strike on May 24, 1988 in protest of the Amtrak drug testing policy. The alleged reprisals also included the scheduling by Amtrak of investigations of McCarthy and other union officers, including plaintiffs Newcomb and O'Riley, as well as the issuance of warning letters to all employees who left their jobs in support of the strike. Plaintiffs now seek declaratory relief protecting them from interference with the rights that are conferred to them under the RLA, Section 2 Third and Fourth. 45 U.S.C. § 152, Third and Fourth.

The issues to be decided are whether Section 2 Third and Fourth provide a cause of action for plaintiffs under the facts of this case and whether this Court has jurisdiction to entertain this lawsuit. Having reviewed the papers and the relevant statutory and case law, we conclude that plaintiffs have failed to state a cause of action under these sections and that jurisdiction over this matter belongs to the Adjustment Boards pursuant to the statutory scheme provided under the RLA.

Section 2 Third of the RLA prohibits interference, influence and coercion with respect to the "designation" or "choice" of representatives. It reads:

Third. Designation of representatives.
Representatives, for the purposes of this Act shall be designated by the respective parties without interference, influence, or coercion by either party over the designation of representatives by the other; and neither party shall in any way interfere with, influence, or coerce the other in its choice of representatives. Representatives of employees for the purposes of this Act need not be persons in the employ of the carrier, and no carrier shall, by interference, influence, or coercion seek in any manner to prevent the designation by its employees as their representatives of those who or which are not employees of the carrier.
45 U.S.C. § 152, Third

Section 2 Fourth of the RLA, also allegedly violated by Amtrak, applies to the designation and choice of representatives and further prohibits employer interference with formation of the labor organization. It states:

Fourth. Organization and collective bargaining; freedom from interference by carrier; assistance in organizing or maintaining organization by carrier forbidden; deduction of dues from wages forbidden.
Employees shall have the right to organize and bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing. The majority of any craft or class of employees shall have the right to determine who shall be the representative of the craft or class for the purposes of this Act. No carrier, its officers or agents, shall deny or in any way question the right of its employees to join, organize, or assist in organizing the labor organization of their choice, and it shall be unlawful for any carrier to interfere in any way with the organization of its employees, or to use
712 F. Supp. 7
the funds of the carrier in maintaining or assisting or contributing to any labor organization, labor representative, or other agency of collective bargaining, or in performing any work therefor, or to influence or coerce employees in an effort to induce them to join or remain or not to join or remain members of any labor organization, or to deduct from the wages of employees any dues, fees, assessments, or other contributions payable to labor organizations, or to collect or to assist in the collection of any such dues, fees, assessments or other contributions.
45 U.S.C. § 152, Fourth

Plaintiffs claim that the RLA...

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4 practice notes
  • National R.R. Passenger Corp. v. International Ass'n of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, Nos. 89-1262
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (1st Circuit)
    • October 3, 1989
    ...of facts, we consolidate for appellate review two decisions of the district court. McCarthy v. National Railroad Passenger Corporation, 712 F.Supp. 5 (D.Mass.1989) (McCarthy ); and National Railroad Passenger Corporation v. International Association of Machinists et al., (Civil Action No. 8......
  • National R.R. Passenger v. Transport Workers Union, No. CIV.A. 03-2010 JR.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
    • December 10, 2003
    ...engaging in this "political protest" even in the absence of an express "no strike clause." Cf. McCarthy v. Nat'l R.R. Passenger Corp., 712 F.Supp. 5 (D.Mass.1989), aff'd 915 F.2d 43 (1st Cir.1990) (declining to enjoin Amtrak from disciplining leaders of a strike, finding the dispute over di......
  • National Railroad Passenger Corporation v. Transport Workers Union of Amer., Civil Action No. 03-2010 (JR) (D. D.C. 12/10/2003), Civil Action No. 03-2010 (JR).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
    • December 10, 2003
    ...engaging in this "political protest" even in the absence of an express "no strike clause." Cf. McCarthy v. Nat'l R.R. Passenger Corp., 712 F. Supp. 5 (D. Mass 1989), aff'd 915 F.2d 43 (1st Cir. 1990) (declining to enjoin Amtrak from disciplining leaders of a strike, finding the dispute over......
  • Tarpeh-Doe v. US, Civ. A. No. 88-0270-LFO.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
    • May 11, 1989
    ...to the evidence disclosed to them. ORDER For reasons stated in the accompanying Memorandum, it is this 10th day of May, 1989, hereby 712 F. Supp. 5 ORDERED: that plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment on Count IV is hereby granted; and it is ORDERED: that proceedings on Count I are hereby ......
4 cases
  • National R.R. Passenger Corp. v. International Ass'n of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, Nos. 89-1262
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (1st Circuit)
    • October 3, 1989
    ...of facts, we consolidate for appellate review two decisions of the district court. McCarthy v. National Railroad Passenger Corporation, 712 F.Supp. 5 (D.Mass.1989) (McCarthy ); and National Railroad Passenger Corporation v. International Association of Machinists et al., (Civil Action No. 8......
  • National R.R. Passenger v. Transport Workers Union, No. CIV.A. 03-2010 JR.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
    • December 10, 2003
    ...engaging in this "political protest" even in the absence of an express "no strike clause." Cf. McCarthy v. Nat'l R.R. Passenger Corp., 712 F.Supp. 5 (D.Mass.1989), aff'd 915 F.2d 43 (1st Cir.1990) (declining to enjoin Amtrak from disciplining leaders of a strike, finding the dispute over di......
  • National Railroad Passenger Corporation v. Transport Workers Union of Amer., Civil Action No. 03-2010 (JR) (D. D.C. 12/10/2003), Civil Action No. 03-2010 (JR).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
    • December 10, 2003
    ...engaging in this "political protest" even in the absence of an express "no strike clause." Cf. McCarthy v. Nat'l R.R. Passenger Corp., 712 F. Supp. 5 (D. Mass 1989), aff'd 915 F.2d 43 (1st Cir. 1990) (declining to enjoin Amtrak from disciplining leaders of a strike, finding the dispute over......
  • Tarpeh-Doe v. US, Civ. A. No. 88-0270-LFO.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
    • May 11, 1989
    ...to the evidence disclosed to them. ORDER For reasons stated in the accompanying Memorandum, it is this 10th day of May, 1989, hereby 712 F. Supp. 5 ORDERED: that plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment on Count IV is hereby granted; and it is ORDERED: that proceedings on Count I are hereby ......

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