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Settlement ends labor dispute at Philadelphia rail car plant

A settlement agreement approved by the National Labor Relations Board earlier this month ends a long-running labor dispute at a Philadelphiaplant that assembles rail cars for the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority (SEPTA). 

The settlement resolves five unfair labor practice charges alleging unlawful conduct by Hyundai Rotem USA Corp. and TTA Philadelphia LLC, joint employers at the plant, following a 2010 vote by mechanical and electrical workers in favor of representation by the Transportation Workers Union of Philadelphia, Local 234.

The union alleged that the employers delayed the start of contract negotiations, refused to meet frequently enough with the Union, failed to furnish requested information and made unilateral changes, including a more stringent enforcement of attendance policies. As a result, some 54 employees were disciplined and nine others were discharged between September and December 2010. Following an investigation, the NLRB regional office in Philadelphiaissued an unfair labor practice complaint and scheduled a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge.  

The settlement was reached days before the hearing was set to begin on August 1, and was signed by the Acting Regional Director on August 5. It provides that the employers will not engage in further unfair labor practice conduct and will bargain in good faith with the union.  The disciplinary actions will be rescinded, and the nine discharged employees will be offered reinstatement and backpay totaling about $95,000. 

The parties have also agreed to establish a bargaining schedule and will extend the effective dates of bargaining for six months.  In addition, the Board’s Notice will be read to employees by an Employer official at a meeting. 

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