Decision Date24 November 1943
Docket NumberCivil Action No. 3083-H.
Citation53 F. Supp. 23
CourtU.S. District Court — Southern District of California

S. Arion Lewis, Jr., of Los Angeles, Cal., for plaintiff.

Betts & Garrison, by Forrest A. Betts, all of Los Angeles, Cal., for defendant.

Katz & Gitelson, by Chas. J. Katz, all of Los Angeles, Cal., for intervenor.

HOLLZER, District Judge.

The matters requiring determination arise out of certain motions interposed on behalf of United Packing House Workers of America (P. W. O. C. Local 200), an unincorporated Labor Union affiliated with the Congress of Industrial Organizations, hereinafter referred to as intervenor. Such motions are:

1. To vacate the injunction pendente lite heretofore granted herein.

2. To dismiss the suit.

The complaint alleges, in substance, that this action arises under the National Labor Relations Act, 29 U.S.C.A. § 151 et seq., hereinafter called the Act; that plaintiff is an independent labor organization formed in 1936, whose membership is composed of the production and maintenance employees of defendant, excluding teamsters, truck drivers, office employees and certain others; that ever since 1936 and down to the time of the commencement of this action, plaintiff has been the sole bargaining agency for all such employees; that throughout said period it has been the practice of plaintiff annually to hold certain elections at which all of such employees have been eligible to vote, and thereby a certain group known as Employees' Representative Committee has been chosen to act as said employees' representative for purposes of collective bargaining with defendant and also to manage plaintiff's affairs; that throughout said period it has been the practice of plaintiff, annually, immediately following the election of the Committee, to enter into a contract through the Committee with defendant, whereby the latter has agreed to recognize the former as the sole bargaining agency for all such employees at defendant's Los Angeles plant for all purposes concerning wages, rates of pay, hours of employment and all other matters relating to labor relations between defendant and such employees; that through the Committee elected May 10, 1943, plaintiff and defendant on or about May 21, 1943 entered into a contract of the kind specified, the same to remain in effect until the second Monday of May, 1944.

It is further alleged that although plaintiff at all times has been and is ready, willing and able to perform all of its obligations thereunder, defendant has refused and threatens to continue to refuse to perform any part of said contract; that the defendant seeks to justify such refusal on the ground that it has been ordered by a certain decision and certification issued on July 13, 1943, by the National Labor Relations Board, hereinafter referred to as the Board, to recognize for the purposes of collective bargaining said intervenor; but that said decision and certification are void.

Likewise the complaint avers that by reason of a petition filed by intervenor claiming to be the representative of a majority of such employees, the Board caused several elections to be held among said employees; that in the last of such elections, to-wit the one held June 24, 1943, there were 436 eligible voters, 382 of whom cast their ballots, that 11 of the latter were challenged, and that of the remainder 192 were cast for intervenor and the balance for plaintiff; that said election was improperly, unfairly and unlawfully held, supervised and managed by the Board for the following reasons, namely, bias and prejudice against plaintiff and in favor of intervenor were exhibited before and throughout said election by the Board's Field Examiner who conducted said proceedings, that the place of election was generally reputed to be the premises dominated by intervenor and was selected over plaintiff's objection, that said Field Examiner demanded that defendant refuse to deal with plaintiff, that he improperly exercised challenges to 11 votes, that in violation of directives issued by the Board said Field Examiner changed the appropriate employment unit by excluding therefrom plant clerical employees who are paid on an hourly basis, and that no such organization as the aforementioned C. I. O. Union exists.

In addition plaintiff has pleaded that it has exhausted every remedy it had before the Board, that it filed with the Board its objections to said election held June 24, 1943, and requested a hearing thereon, but the Board denied plaintiff a hearing on said objections, overruled the same, and issued the aforementioned certification that the intervenor be recognized as the representative for the purposes of collective bargaining of said employees of defendant.

It is further alleged in the complaint that defendant's repudiation of its contract with plaintiff has resulted and will continue to result in irreparable loss to the latter in various respects, as more particularly set forth in said pleading, unless defendant be enjoined from continuing its repudiation of said agreement; and that the Act makes no provision for judicial appeal or review of proceedings of said Board had pursuant to Section 9 of the National Labor Relations Act. The complaint prays that defendant be enjoined from continuing its repudiation of said contract, including its refusal to recognize the aforementioned Committee as the sole bargaining agent of said employees of defendant respecting all matters concerning wages, hours of employment and all other matters pertaining to labor relations between defendant and its said employees.

Defendant filed an answer and alleged therein in substance that this action arises not under the Act, but that if plaintiff has a cause of action it is one arising in equity because of the failure of the Act to provide for court action arising out of a ruling of the Board in the certification of a collective bargaining unit; also that until the Board made its determination holding the C. I. O. to be the collective bargaining agent, defendant recognized plaintiff and its committee; that by reason of such certification by the Board and ever since about July 19, 1943, defendant has refused to carry out the terms of the aforementioned contract entered into between it and plaintiff, and instead has recognized said C. I. O. Committee as such bargaining agent of its employees hereinbefore mentioned.

Save in the specific instances presently to be noted, the material allegations of the complaint are not denied in the answer. After averring that neither the plaintiff nor the intervenor received a majority vote of its employees entitled to vote in the employment unit appropriate for such purposes and required by Section 9 (a) of the Act, and after charging upon information and belief that the Field Examiner for the Board showed favoritism toward the C. I. O. Union in his supervision and management of the election, defendant has denied, for lack of information or belief sufficient to enable it to answer the same, those allegations of the complaint wherein plaintiff has alleged in substance that the place of election was improper, that 11 employees were wrongfully challenged, that the Field Examiner wrongfully changed the appropriate employment unit, and that the aforementioned C. I. O. Union had no existence.

In its answer defendant has also pleaded that it filed objections to the election held on June 24, 1943, and requested the Board to fix a time for hearing these objections, but that the Board denied such request and made the certification previously mentioned. In addition defendant has alleged that if the action of the Board be void and not binding upon defendant and if plaintiff was entitled to a continuance of compliance with its collective bargaining contract, then defendant admits plaintiff would be seriously affected by defendant's refusal to deal with plaintiff and that the latter's rights may be preserved only by an injunction restraining defendant from repudiating its contract with plaintiff and from continuing its refusal to recognize plaintiff's committee as the sole bargaining agent of defendant's employees previously described.

At the hearing held upon plaintiff's application for an injunction pendente lite counsel for plaintiff and defendant, respectively, appeared, and thereupon such application was presented upon a record whereby they stipulated in open court to a set of facts which in substance established the truth of the ultimate facts pleaded in the complaint. Upon that record an order was made awarding to plaintiff an injunction pendente lite substantially as prayed for.

Approximately three days later intervenor filed a motion for leave to intervene and also a motion to vacate the injunction pendente lite, and subsequently moved to dismiss the action. In support of the first two motions intervenor has submitted copies, respectively, of the Board's original Decision and Direction of Elections, its Supplemental Decision and Certification of Representatives and Direction of Run-Off Election, its Second Supplemental Decision and Direction of Second Run-Off Election and also the Board's Third Supplemental Decision and Certification of Representatives, and in addition intervenor filed two affidavits.

Besides restating certain of the matters disclosed by the complaint, the aforementioned Decisions, etc., of the Board show that plaintiff appeared and participated at the hearing held by the Board on February 15 and 16, 1943, upon the intervenor's petition seeking a determination of representation of defendant's employees; that in the original Decision and Direction of Elections, rendered under date of March 19, 1943, the Board directed that, not later than thirty days thereafter, elections be conducted at defendant's Los Angeles plant, among the appropriate employees who were employed during the pay-roll period immediately preceding the...

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4 cases
  • Donnelly Garment Co. v. Dubinsky
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Eighth Circuit
    • March 11, 1946
    ...Obergfell, 73 App.D. C. 298, 121 F.2d 46, 52, 138 A.L.R. 258; Wilson & Co. v. Birl, 3 Cir., 105 F.2d 948; Wilson Employees' Representation Plan v. Wilson & Co., D.C.Cal., 53 F.Supp. 23; Heintz Mfg. Co. v. Local No. 515, D.C. Pa., 20 F.Supp. 116; Oswald Co. v. Leader et al., D.C.Pa., 20 F.Su......
  • Yoerg Brewing Co. v. Brennan
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Minnesota
    • March 6, 1945
    ...that the state decisions referred to constitute persuasive precedents. Reference may be made to the case of Wilson Employees' Representation Plan v. Wilson & Co., D.C., 53 F.Supp. 23. There, two rival labor organizations were in dispute. The National Labor Relations Board caused certain ele......
  • INTERNATIONAL CHEM. WKRS. U. v. Olin Mathieson Chem. Corp.
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Southern District of Illinois
    • February 7, 1962
    ...Cir., 1939); Brown v. Roofers and Waterproofers Union, Local No. 40, 86 F.Supp. 50 (N.D.Calif.1949); Wilson Employees Representation Plan v. Wilson & Company, 53 F.Supp. 23 (S.D.Calif.1943) and N. L. R. B. v. Star Publishing Company, 97 F.2d 465 (9th Cir., Two cases have been cited which ar......
  • United States v. Skilken
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Northern District of Ohio
    • December 6, 1943

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