U.S. Department of Labor
Office of Labor-Management Standards
Division of Enforcement
Washington, DC 20210
(202) 693-0143 Fax: (202) 693-1343
May 24, 2011
This Statement of Reasons is in response to your complaint filed with the Department of
Labor on January 21, 2011, alleging violations of Title IV of the Labor-Management
Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA) occurred in connection with the election of
officers for the Phoenix Domicile Vice Chairman conducted by the U.S. Airline Pilots
Association (USAPA) on October 28, 2010.
The Department of Labor conducted an investigation of your allegations. As a result of
the investigation, the Department has concluded, with respect to the allegations that
there was no violation of the LMRDA. Following is an explanation of this conclusion.
You alleged that, during the 2010 Phoenix domicile election for vice chairman,
candidates were authorized to distribute campaign materials only to US Airways pilots
eligible to vote in that domicile election but that in previous elections no such restriction
Section 401(c) of the Act, 29 U.S.C. § 481(c), requires a union to comply with all
reasonable requests of any candidate to distribute by mail or otherwise at the
candidate’s expense campaign literature in aid of such person’s candidacy to all
members in good standing. See also 29 C.F.R. §§ 452.67, 68. The Department’s
investigation disclosed that USAPA 2010 election rules governed the distribution of
campaign materials and that the rules were distributed to all members, including you.
The rules informed members that USAPA had made arrangements with Allied Union
Services to print candidates’ campaign material and to distribute such material to
eligible voters by postal mail or by e-mail. The election rules also stated that a
candidate should use the form and contact information on the union’s website if the
candidate wanted to have campaign literature distributed by Allied Union Services.
The rules further stated that the company would charge candidates a one-time set-up
fee of $100.00 and a fee of $85.00 for each electronic transmission of campaign material
to the email addresses of pilots assigned to the Phoenix domicile.
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The investigation disclosed that, on October 26, 2010, two days prior to the end of the
election, you sent an email to Allied Union Services stating, “would like to send out an
email campaign blast to all US Airways Pilots. . . I would like the email blast to go out
10/27/10.” You wanted it to go to all USAPA members assigned to the various
domiciles as well as non-members. However, you never made any arrangements with
Allied Union Services for a campaign blast. Therefore, your October 26 email did not
constitute a legitimate request for a campaign distribution.
To the extent that your October 26 email may be construed as such a request, the
investigation did not substantiate that the request was reasonable. Your October 26
email concerning the campaign blast was made only 24 hours before you wanted the
blast to go out. You wanted it to go to all USAPA members as well as non-members.
Only pilots assigned to the Phoenix domicile were eligible to vote in the Phoenix
domicile election for vice chairman. The USAPA, therefore, forwarded a roster to
Allied Union Services containing the names and available email addresses only of those
pilots. In order for you to have obtained a campaign blast to all USAPA members and
to non-members on October 27, the union would have been required, within that 24hour
period, to compile the names and available email addresses of the 2,200 USAPA
members who are not assigned to the Phoenix domicile, obtain the names and email
addresses of the 1,600 pilots who are not members of USAPA, and then forward this
information to Allied Union Services.
Further, the investigation established that you never made arrangements with Allied
Union Services for a campaign blast and that you did not provide any campaign
materials to the company or USAPA for such blast such that an email blast could be
made. Nor did you pay the required one-time set-up fee of $100.00 and the fee of $85.00
for the electronic transmission of the blast. On these facts, the union can not be said to
have failed to comply with a reasonable request to distribute campaign literature.
Finally, regarding your remaining allegations, you alleged that the union failed to
comply with the requirements of the conflict of interest disclosure form. You further
alleged that a change in the professional standards policy left pilots with no avenue to
mitigate hostile work environment issues. However, such allegations concern internal
labor-management issues and, thus, even if true, they would not constitute violations of
the LMRDA. Therefore, these allegations are dismissed.
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For the reasons set forth above, it is concluded that there was no violation of the Act
and I have closed the file on this matter.
Chief, Division of Enforcement
cc: Michael J. Cleary, President
U.S. Airline Pilots Association
5821 Fairview Road, Suite 400
Charlotte, North Carolina 28209
Beverly Dankowitz, Acting Associate Solicitor
Civil Rights and Labor-Management Division