On December 14, 2020, as a result of the criminal activity uncovered during a federal investigation, the United Auto Workers International Union (UAW), located in Detroit, Mich., entered into a civil settlement with the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan. The union agreed to oversight by an independent monitor for a period of six years. As part of the agreement, the union paid back $15 million to the joint training center for inappropriate charges as well as $1.5 million to settle tax issues with the Internal Revenue Service. Additionally, the union agreed to hold a referendum vote to determine whether representatives on the UAW International Executive Board should be elected directly by the union members. The civil settlement agreement follows an investigation by the OLMS Detroit-Milwaukee District Office, the Department of Labor’s Office of Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Internal Revenue Service.
On July 24, 2020, in the United States District Court for the District of Nevada, a Stipulation of Settlement and Order was filed to resolve the Department’s lawsuit against Laborers Union International of North America (LIUNA) Local 872 (located in Las Vegas, Nev.). The Stipulation of Settlement and Order provides that the Department will supervise the next regularly scheduled election of officers of the local union, including nominations. The Secretary brought suit seeking to nullify the local’s April 18, 2015 election for the office of vice president on grounds that Local 872 improperly applied its literacy and residency requirements to a nominee for vice president. The settlement comes after a decision from the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit decision, dated May 18, 2020, which affirmed the District Court’s grant of summary judgment to the Secretary. The lawsuit follows an investigation by the OLMS Los Angeles District Office.
On May 22, 2020, Communications Workers of America (CWA) Local 1400 (located in Portsmouth, N.H.) and the Department entered a settlement agreement to end the litigation surrounding the union’s election of officers that concluded on October 4, 2017. In that settlement, Local 1400 agreed that OLMS would supervise its next regular election of officers, including nominations, on or before November 30, 2020. After being notified of the settlement agreement, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit entered a judgment ordering the voluntarily dismissal of the Department’s appeal of an adverse ruling in September 2019, in the U.S. District Court for New Hampshire. The settlement agreement follows an investigation by the OLMS Boston-Buffalo District Office.
On May 22, 2020, OLMS filed a complaint with the Department of Labor’s Office of the Administrative Law Judge seeking an order to overturn the April 11, 2019 election of officers that was conducted by the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) Local 2145 (located in Richmond, Va.). The OLMS investigation previously found that the union denied eligible members the right to vote when it did not provide sufficient information to members to request absentee ballots and the election committee chairman was not available to process the requests that they received. Additionally, the union failed to comply with reasonable requests by candidates to distribute campaign literature at their expense when they did not make campaign literature mailing labels available to some of the candidates who had requested them until three days before the election. The complaint also seeks an order directing the union to conduct a new election for the positions of president, executive vice president, and trustee chairman under OLMS supervision. The complaint follows an investigation by the OLMS Washington District Office.
On April 6, 2020, in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio, Eastern Division, a Stipulation of Settlement and Order was entered to resolve the Department’s lawsuit against American Postal Workers Union (APWU) Local 72 (located in Cleveland, Ohio). The Stipulation of Settlement and Order provides that the Department will supervise the next regularly-scheduled election of officers of the Local 72, including nominations, no later than April 30, 2021. The lawsuit sought to set aside the union’s April 29, 2018 election after the Department’s investigation concluded that the union denied members the right to vote when it failed to make reasonable efforts to update the membership mailing list, obtain better addresses for undelivered ballots, respond timely to member requests for replacement ballots, and count ballots for members missing secret ballot envelopes. The union also failed to maintain adequate safeguards when it provided inconsistent and inadequate notice regarding deadlines and the method of returning ballots. Lastly, the union failed to elect by secret ballot vote when ballot numbers could be matched to an outer envelope and a voter list was maintained linking the ballot numbers to members. The settlement follows an investigation by the OLMS Cincinnati-Cleveland District Office.
On April 3, 2020, in the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut, the Department filed suit against New Haven Federation of Teachers (NHFT) Local 933 (located in New Haven, Conn.), concerning its February 27, 2020 rerun election for the office of president. The OLMS investigation determined that Local 933 improperly denied a member in good standing the opportunity to run for president when the union disciplined and barred the member from holding office without serving the member with written specific charges and without providing a full and fair hearing. The lawsuit follows an investigation by the OLMS Boston-Buffalo District Office.
On February 10, 2020, the United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri granted the Secretary of Labor’s motion for summary judgment against Local 41 of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters under Title IV of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959. The Secretary brought suit seeking to nullify the local’s November 16, 2017 election of president, vice president, secretary-treasurer, recording secretary, and three trustees. The lawsuit alleged that Local 41 failed to provide adequate safeguards by failing to ensure that members were able to return their voted ballots when the barcode on the back of the envelope for voted ballots caused some ballots to be returned to the members who mailed them. In granting the Secretary’s motion, the Court ruled that Local 41 failed to provide adequate instructions for casting their ballots when it posted confusing directions for remedying the barcode problem to its private Facebook group, which consisted of less than 15 percent of the entire membership. The Court ordered a new election of officers under OLMS supervision. The lawsuit follows an investigation by the OLMS Denver-St. Louis District Office.
Last Updated: 12-28-20