Atlantic Aviation PNE, Inc. employee Tiffany Lipyanic and her coworkers have won their effort to free themselves from unwanted union monopoly “representation.” After the employees filed a request for a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) decertification election to end the union’s monopoly bargaining powers over all workers at the Atlantic Aviation facility at Philadelphia Northeast Airport, International Association of Machinists (IAM) union officials abandoned their “representation” rather than face an overwhelming vote against the union.
Lipyanic and her colleagues received free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys in filing their petition for a vote to oust union officials on February 15th. The petition was signed by 11 of 16 line service and customer service representatives who work for Atlantic Aviation at the Philadelphia Northeast Airport, more than twice the number needed to trigger an NLRB-supervised “decertification” secret-ballot election, after which union officials lose monopoly bargaining power if a majority of workers vote to remove them.
Rather than proceed to a vote, International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers Air Transport District Lodge 142 and Local Lodge 1776 officials filed documents with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) disclaiming their monopoly bargaining powers on February 28.
“After trying to work with union officials for years, it became apparent our pleas fell on deaf ears. We were paying union officials and got nothing in return, so we’re glad to finally be free of them,” Lipyanic commented. “Having the National Right to Work Foundation’s assistance gave us confidence in our journey to finally free ourselves from union bureaucrats that took our money and disregarded us at every turn.”
This is the latest in a series of successful worker efforts to oust unwanted union officials aided by National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys. In just the past few weeks, Foundation staff attorneys aided Penske Truck Leasing employees in Bloomington, Indiana, with filing their decertification petition, after which the union walked away, and successfully defended Kansas City, Missouri hospital workers against an SEIU union attempt to overturn their vote to remove the union in their hospital.
The Foundation has also fought to break down union boss-created legal barriers to unseating unwanted union officials. In 2020, following detailed formal comments submitted by Foundation attorneys, the NLRB adopted rules eviscerating union bosses’ ability to stop a decertification effort with “blocking charges,” i.e., accusations made against an employer that are often unverified and have no connection to workers’ desire to kick out unwanted union officials.
“The Foundation is happy to have helped the workers at Atlantic Aviation to exercise their right to free themselves of a union they oppose. But to better protect all workers’ freedom of association, Pennsylvania needs a Right to Work law on the books,” commented National Right to Work Foundation President Mark Mix.
“Under the protection of a Right to Work law each individual worker can decide whether or not to join or financially support a labor union, instead of current law which empowers union bosses to use their monopoly bargaining status to force workers to pay up or be fired,” Mix added.
The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, assists thousands of employees in around 250 cases nationwide per year.