The opinion of the court was delivered by: Decker, District Judge.
This suit, for an injunction and damages, is being brought
by three former members of the International Brotherhood of
Electrical Workers (I. B. E. W.), Local Union #134 of the
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (Local 134)
and several individuals in their official capacities with
either the I. B. E. W. or Local 134.
"Any member resorting to the courts for redress
for any injustice which he may believe has been
done him by the I. B. E. W. or any of its L.U.'s,
must first make use of the process available to
him, including any appeal or appeals from any
decision against him, which may be open to him
within the I. B. E. W. and, failing to do so, he
shall stand automatically expelled and without
rights of any kind."
The plaintiffs allege that Article XXVII, Section 1,
violates their rights under 29 U.S.C. § 411(a)(4), which
provides, in part, the following:
"No labor organization shall limit the right of
any member thereof to institute an action in any
court * * *: Provided, That any such member may be
required to exhaust reasonable hearing procedures
(but not to exceed a four-month lapse of time)
within such organization, before instituting legal
or administrative proceedings against such
organizations or any officer thereof * * *."
29 U.S.C. § 411(b) provides:
"Any provision of the constitution and bylaws of
any labor organization which is inconsistent with
the provisions of this section shall be of no
force or effect."
The defendants have moved to dismiss the complaint. The
plaintiffs have moved for summary judgment on the issue of
liability. The undisputed facts upon which this action is
based are set forth in the affidavit of Russell H. Olson,
Assistant to the President of the defendant I. B. E. W., these
facts are the following:
1. Plaintiffs were pari-mutuel clerks working at race tracks
in the Chicago area; they were officers and members of the
Pari-mutuel Clerks Unit of Local Union 134, I. B. E. W.
2. In the summer of 1963, a negotiation committee from the
Pari-mutuel Clerks Unit was attempting to negotiate a new
agreement with a representative of the race track owners.
3. By a vote of its membership, the local unit rejected the
proposals made by the representative and, finally, voted to
4. On August 14, 1963, in accordance with the I. B. E. W.'s
constitution, the local unit sought the permission of the
International President to strike; this permission was denied
on August 15, 1963.
5. At the same time, it was determined that the local was
required to submit to compulsory arbitration, as provided in
the existing collective bargaining agreement. The plaintiffs
contended that the existing agreement did not require the
local to arbitrate. This contention was made to, and was
denied by, the parent union, the International Vice President
of the Sixth District, and the International President.
6. On September 6, 1963, as the local was being engaged in
compulsory arbitration, the plaintiffs filed their suit in the
District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against
Local 134 and its officers. This suit asked that the Court
enjoin the defendants from proceeding with the arbitration,
which the plaintiffs claimed was ...