The opinion of the court was delivered by: Bua, District Judge.
Before the Court is the defendant's motion to strike the
plaintiff's prayer for injunctive relief in a labor dispute.
For the reasons stated herein, defendant's motion is denied.
Plaintiff Air Line Pilots Association, International
("ALPA") filed this suit for injunctive relief under the
Railway Labor Act, as amended, 45 U.S.C. § 151 et seq. ("RLA").
The suit alleges that various conduct of defendant, United Air
Lines, Inc. ("United") interfered with the collective
bargaining negotiations between the parties resulting in a
strike against United by ALPA. ALPA is the collective
bargaining representative under the RIA for captains, first
officers and second officers employed by United.
ALPA commenced its strike on May 17, 1985. The strike
followed the parties' exhaustion of the mandatory negotiation
and mediation procedures under the RLA and expiration of the
30-day statutory cooling-off period. 45 U.S.C. § 156. As its
last official act immediately prior to the commencement of the
cooling-off period, the National Mediation Board ("NMB")
proffered its services to arbitrate the dispute. On the same
day of the proffer, United rejected the arbitration proffer and
the NMB officially terminated its services. ALPA did not accept
the NMB proffer. The reasons for this nonacceptance are
The key issues raised by the defendant's motion are (1)
whether ALPA must accept the NMB proffer before going into
court to obtain injunctive relief, even though United rejected
the proffer, and (2) if so, did ALPA fail to make every
reasonable effort to settle the dispute, before and during the
strike, when it did not accept the NMB proffer.
It is well settled that a party seeking injunctive relief
under the Railway Labor Act must comply with Section 8 of the
Norris-La Guardia Act. 29 U.S.C. § 108. Brotherhood of Railroad
Trainmen, Enterprise Lodge, No. 27 v. Toledo, P. & W. R.R.,
321 U.S. 50, 64 S.Ct. 413, 88 L.Ed. 534 (1944) ("Toledo R.R.").
Section 8 of the Norris-La Guardia Act provides:
No restraining order or injunctive relief shall
be granted to any complainant who has failed
to . . . make every reasonable effort to settle
such dispute either by negotiation or with the aid
of any available governmental machinery of
mediation or voluntary arbitration.
This provision is almost identical to Section 2, First, of the
RLA, which imposes on all parties the duty to make every
reasonable effort to settle the dispute. 45 U.S.C. § 152,
First. Since Section 8 is congruent with the RLA, the party
seeking injunctive relief under the RLA should be held to
Section 8's requirements. Local 553, Transport Workers v.
Eastern Air Lines, 695 F.2d 668, 679 (2d Cir. 1982).
The Supreme Court in Toledo R.R., supra, held that Section 8
would bar a complainant from injunctive relief if he had not
submitted the dispute to arbitration. Toledo R.R., supra, 321
U.S. at 63, 64 S.Ct. at 420; Elgin, Joliet and Eastern Railway
Company v. Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen, 302 F.2d 540 (7th
Cir.), cert. denied, 371 U.S. 823, 83 S.Ct. 42, 9 L.Ed.2d 63
(1962). In Toledo R.R., the railroad, which sought the
injunctive relief, refused to agree to arbitration while the
union agreed to arbitrate the dispute. In reversing an
injunction issued in the railroad's favor, the Supreme Court
Arbitration under the Railway Labor Act was
available, afforded a method for settlement
Congress itself has provided, and until
respondent accepted this method it has not made
"every reasonable ...