Monroeville, PA (July 8, 2014) – Gateway School District bus drivers have overwhelmingly voted to remove a local union from their workplace.
The school bus drivers were finally allowed to vote to remove the union from their workplace after driver Robert Williams, who received free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, and his coworkers petitioned the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for a secret-ballot election four times.
In July of last year, Student Transportation of America, Inc. took over bus services at the Gateway School District. Student Transportation of America then recognized Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 1729 union officials as the drivers’ monopoly bargaining representative after a majority of their workforce was hired from the previous, unionized student transportation contractor.
After eight months of failed negotiations between the company and union, 102 of the roughly 105 bus drivers signed the fourth petition they filed with the NLRB asking for a secret-ballot election to determine whether or not to keep the union as their exclusive representative. ATU union officials moved to block the workers’ petition, arguing that not enough time had passed for the workers to request an election. On May 8, an evidentiary hearing was held in Pittsburgh, at which Williams was represented by Foundation attorneys. The NLRB last month decided to allow the election to proceed.
On June 27, 87 percent of the bus drivers casting ballots voted to remove the unwanted union from their workplace.
“It is easy to see why Transit Union bosses repeatedly blocked these bus drivers’ requests for a secret-ballot election to determine their union representation,” said Mark Mix, president of the National Right to Work Foundation. “As a result of the decertification victory, these bus drivers will now be free to negotiate their own terms and conditions of employment, and be rewarded on their individual merit.”
The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, assists thousands of employees in more than 250 cases nationwide per year.