Recent Representative Cases

Court of Appeals and Supreme Court Cases

 

Hicks v. Central Point School District and First Student, Inc., 270 Or. App. 532, 348 P.3d 307 (2015), rev. den. 357 Or. 743 (2015). Successfully challenged school district’s non-compliance with public contracting code when outsourcing public school transportation services to private company.

 

Moro v. State of Oregon et al., 357 Or. 167, 351 P.3d 1 (2015). Filed brief for amicus curiae International Association of Fire Fighters in lawsuit that successfully challenged legislation aimed at reducing retirement benefits.

 

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local 3564 v. City of Grants Pass, 262 Or. App. 657 (2014). Successfully challenged city’s failure to comply with overtime laws for fire fighters.

 

U.S. District Court and State Court Cases

City of Pocatello v. Pocatello Firefighters, Case No. CV-03-19-01360 (Bannock County, Idaho – September 23, 2019). The City refused to arbitrate a grievance and sued the Firefighters to prevent arbitration. Firefighters filled counterclaims to compel arbitration. Firefighters won a summary judgment on the competing complaints and ordered the City to arbitrate.

 

Alaska Nurses Association v. PeaceHealth, Case No. 15-CV-00219-HRH (August 5, 2016). Successfully challenged PeaceHealth's refusal to arbitrate a grievance on timeliness grounds. Court's opinion sided with labor association and ordered PeaceHealth to arbitrate the grievance.

Dismissal of claims against a labor union granted, with prejudice, Multnomah County Circuit Court (2017). Upheld on appeal by the Oregon Court of Appeals (2019). 

Dismissal of personal injury and related claims against labor union landlord, Multnomah County Circuit Court (2018). 

Employment Relations Board Decisions

Pendleton Firefighters Union 2296 v. City of Pendleton, Case No. UP-014-18 (2019). Successfully proved the City committed an unfair labor practice when it refused to sign any writing documenting an agreement reached by the parties at a meeting in February of 2018. As part of the remedy, the Board ordered the City to sign the agreement. Board denied subsequent motions for reconsideration and rehearing. 

E.K. v. Benton County Sheriff's Ofc. & Benton County Sheriff's Ass'n, Case No. FR-005-18 (2019). Successfully defended a labor association and dismissed an action brought by a member asserting that the union had violated its duty of fair representation to him. 

IAFF Local 1159 v. City of Lake Oswego, Case No. UP-015-18 (2018). Proved the City committed an unfair labor practice when by not completing its bargaining obligations regarding the impact of the City’s decision to change its method of calculating unused sick leave on Association-represented employees who retired.

 

International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Local 233 v. City of Medford, Case No. UC-014-17 (2018). Successfully argued the City’s exclusion of a position from the bargaining unit was improper because it was non-supervisory.

Oregon School Employees Association v. South Coast Education Service District, Case No. UP-027-16 (2017). Successfully challenged school district’s refusal to bargain over safety issues that impacted the on-the-job safety of employees, overcoming waiver argument based on broadly-worded “zipper clause.”

Service Employees International Union Local 503, Oregon Public Employees Union v. State of Oregon, Department of Revenue, UP-006-14 (2015). Proved the State had violated a previous Board Order and  Settlement Agreement by deducting pay equal to one half-hour meal period on travel days and not compensating employees for all hours spent traveling during overnight travel.

 

Oregon School Employees Association v. North Clackamas School District, UP-017-13 (2014). Proved the school district committed an unfair labor practice by refusing to arbitrate a grievance the district contended was untimely. The Board ordered the District to arbitrate the grievance.

 

Oregon School Employees Association v. Parkrose School District, 25 PECBR 783, UP-030-12 (2013). Successfully challenged school district’s unilateral implementation of furlough days without bargaining and obtained order requiring district to restore lost wages and benefits to furloughed employees.

 

International Assocation of Fire Fighters, Local 890 v. Klamath County Fire District 1, UP-049-12 (2013). Proved that the District unilaterally implemented changes to mandatory subjects of bargaining, before completing the required bargaining process.

 

Association of Engineering Employees of Oregon v. State of Oregon, Dept. of Admin. Services, UP-043-11 (2013). Prevailed on charges against the State arising from the State's unilateral changes, including restrictions on email use during contract negotiations. Established that use of the State's email system for Association-related communications is mandatory for bargaining.

 

National Labor Relations Board Decisions

 

Hydro-Temp Mechanical, Inc. and Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers, Local 16, 19-RC-114979 (2013). Successfully defended petition filed with National Labor Relations Board to organize sheet metal workers after employer objected to composition of bargaining unit, resulting in election in favor of union representation.

 

Oregon School Employees Association Chapter 2014, American Federation of Teachers, Local 6732 (First Student, Inc.), and Ken Howard, an Individual, Case 19-CB-106045 (2013). Successfully defended the union against an unfair labor practice complaint filed by an individual and the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation. NLRB had issued a formal charge and case went to hearing, where the Administrative Law Judge found in favor of the union. Case was affirmed by the Board.

 

Interest Arbitration Awards

 

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local 1110 v. City of Roseburg, (Kenneth Latsch, 2019).

 

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local 3256 v. City of Hood River, (David Stiteler, 2014). 

 

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local 845 and City of Albany, IA-10-10 (Katrina I. Boedecker, 2013).

 

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local 1431 and City of Medford, IA-21-05 (Sylvia Skratek, 2008).

 

Other Recent Arbitration Awards of Note

Reinstatement of a pharmacist terminated while on probationary status with full award of back wages (2019).

 

Removal of discipline from fire service member and arbitrator required that employer pay fire service member for all amounts owed due to not being allowed to practice as a paramedic where due process was violated and rationale for discipline did not meet requirements of just cause. Arbitrator further required that employer engage with member and union to address its alleged concerns about member and re-train, if necessary. (2018).

Successfully challenged school district's transfer of an employee to a lower paying position where she had less seniority. Grievant reinstated to previous job. (2018). 

Reinstatement with back wages of three members fired under zero-tolerance policy and class grievance. Arbitrator also found unfair labor practice complaint (unilateral change) due to the change in policy and refusal to bargain with the union; case was part of NLRB deferral process. Underlying issue related to new policy implemented unilaterally over union's objections and resulting terminations as a result of members' violations of new policy. (2017).

 

Guild for Professional Pharmacist v. Kaiser Foundation Hospitals and Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the NW. Successfully challenged employer's calculation of vacation accrual, resulting in order requiring employer to credit employees with vacation leave. (2017).

 

Successfully challenged public school district's termination of employee on basis that performance improvement plan was not uniformly applied, resulting in reinstatement of employee. (2017). 

Reinstatement of nurse with order to pay back wages. (2017). Case related to alleged concerns about nurse's skills and scope of care; proved allegations were not demonstrated by employer.

 

Removal of reprimand from University professor where reprimand related to investigation that was seriously flawed and violated due process. (2017).

 

Reinstatement won for employee who had allegedly violated company policies (2017). Proved company aware of the same kind of alleged violations in the past and had expressed no concerns to employee on other occasions about alleged violations.u

Reinstatement won for a public safety employee who had been terminated for dishonesty. (2016). Proved to the arbitrator that the incident was minor, did not relate to a work rule that had ever led to discipline, and was immediately corrected.

 

Removal of discipline of public employee member who had engaged in off-duty behaviors that were viewed by the employer as being beligerant toward the police (2016). Demonstrated behaviors were garden-variety and that complaint was triggered by bad blood between parties; also demonstrated that employer engaged in discussions with various individuals outside of the normal disciplinary process and took into account information that was never disclosed to member during grievance process, violating her due process rights. 

Oregon School Employees Association v. Clatskanie School District (Arbitrator Joseph W. Duffy, 2015). Successfully challenged school district’s change in calculation of employee contributions toward health insurance premiums, resulting in decision requiring district to reimburse employees.

 

Successfully reduced the lengthy suspension of a public employee on due process grounds when the employer had used stale events as part of the basis for discipline, significantly reducing the suspension. (2015). 

 

Reinstatement won for a public employee terminated for alleged threats against his supervisor. (2015). Demonstrated to the arbitrator that the employer had no proof of the allegations.

 

Reinstatement won for a public employee who had engaged in off-work misconduct that impacted his CDL (2015). In a later arbitration regarding the same employee, successfully challenged the employer's failure to fully implement the first arbitration award (2016). 

 

Reinstatement won for a public employee of a school district who had been terminated for behavior issues (2014). Proved the school district had not engaged in the interactive process or taken into account the employee's disability under the ADA, as a mitigating measure.

Office and Professional Employees International Union, Local 11 v. Clark County (Arbitrator Katrina I. Boedecker, 2013). Successfully enforced seniority clause in the contract in a promotional arbitration grievance. Arbitrator sustained the grievance and ordered the County to promote the employee.

 

Reinstatement won for a private-sector employee who had violated a safety protocol (2013). Arbitrator determined the employer had inappropriately implemented a zero-tolerance policy and, while the safety violation was serious, arbitrator determined suspension was a more appropriate punishment.

 

Reinstatement won for a public safety employee who had been terminated for dishonesty (2013). Proved to the arbitrator that the mistakes made by the employee were due to carelesseness and were not intentional or dishonest.

Licensing Board Matters 

Successfully assisted a fire services professional before the Oregon Health Authority relating to a violation of professionalism charge relating to a criminal matter. (2019).

 

Successfully assisted a physician brought before the Oregon Medical Board for alleged violations of previous corrective action order (2017).

 

Successfully defended a fire services professional before the Oregon Health Authority in a hearing before an administrative law judge in which the OHA attempted to revoke the fire professional's certification due to an off-work conduct incident (2016).

Successfully defended a fire services professional before the Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST) in a hearing before an administrative law judge in which the DPSST attempted to revoke the certificate-holder's certifications due to an off-work conduct incident (2014). 

 

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