Local 550 President Dan Shea was disciplined after having a discussion with an Assistant Deputy Superintendent regarding the way the Deputy was conducting overtime.
The Deputy asked President Shea why he had a problem with the way he was conducting overtime, Dan answered calmly and directly that it was the Superintendent was a “liar, a thief, and took money from Union member’s pockets”.
When President Shea was disciplined for his comments the Union took the case to arbitration and received a very favorable award.
In essence, the Arbitrator ruled that President Shea’s speech, while he was acting in his representational capacity, was protected. The arbitrator ruled that was no just cause for discipline because Shea was raising a legitimate issue of concern to his members. In such circumstances, Arbitrator Litton pointed out that Shea was composed, did not swear and that, in the context of events, no discipline was appropriate.Share