Recent Developments

9 June, 2023

After more than five years of litigation, a neutral arbitrator has remedied the City of Boston's violation of contract language concerning detail rates paid to Boston police officers. The Arbitrator's remedial award, as recommended by Attorney Patrick Bryant, results in increases of $10-to-$21 per hour based upon rank, and represents the first increase in compensation since 2019.

8 June, 2023

On June 8, 2023, a neutral arbitrator handed a solid victory to SENA, Local 9158 in a dispute with the City of Boston about third-party overtime opportunities. Pyle Rome attorney Jillian M. Bertrand represented the Union in the successful arbitration.

1 June, 2023

Some employers apparently think they can dilute the strength of a bargaining unit, and avoid their legal obligations to a union, simply by creating a new title to perform duties or functions long performed by a bargaining unit position. The attached arbitration Award involving the United Steelworkers Local 9427 affirms that regardless of how you name a new position, if it walks like a bargaining unit position and talks like a bargaining unit position, it's a bargaining unit position.

29 May, 2023

What happens when an employer changes a long-standing past practice that is not covered by the collective bargaining agreement? You can certainly file an unfair labor practice charge with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) alleging that the employer failed to bargain in good faith, but sometimes you can also succeed in arbitrating a grievance over the matter.

22 May, 2023

On May 16, 2023, an arbitrator awarded a solid victory to UFCW, Local 1445 in a case regarding an employee whose transfer to a career-advancing position was unfairly and inappropriately scuttled by her supervisor. The case was argued for the Union by Pyle Rome attorney Al Gordon O'Connell.

25 April, 2023

Employers know that arbitrators are reluctant to reinstate union employees found to have committed theft, and that is why employers frequently accuse employees of "theft" or fraud" to intimidate unions from challenging the discipline. UNITE HERE Local 26 and Attorney Hykel were not easily intimidated.

2 May, 2023

A fundamental component of union collective bargaining agreements is a requirement that all discipline be supported by "just cause." As shown by the UNITE HERE Local 26's recent arbitration victory over, just cause includes a requirement that discipline be consistent across employees. Consistency is necessary to ensure that employers do not pick favorites or unfairly target employees even when the discipline is largely the same.

3 May, 2023

On May 3, 2023, the Commonwealth Employee Relations Board issued a ruling upholding the state regulation that allows unions to block elections -- including decertification elections -- when the employer has committed significant unfair labor practices that might impact the outcome of the election. This case of first impression was successfully argued by Pyle Rome attorney Alex Robertson on behalf of UFCW, Local 1459.

5 September, 2022

The right of labor unions to have a voice in the working conditions extends to secret monitoring of public employee performance, according to a new decision of the Massachusetts Appeals Court. This decision vindicates an unfair labor practice filed by Attorney Ian O. Russell on behalf of SEIU Local 509.

6 June, 2022

As with any employees represented by a Union, Boston Police superior officers negotiated various paid leave benefits, such as sick leave, vacation leave and personal leave. The Boston Police Commissioner routinely forces police officers to work when not scheduled, cancels scheduled days off, and attempts to limit their use of paid leave. The schedule of police officers can be subject to the whims of the Police Commissioner, without regard for the need or desire of police officers for adequate time to relax, rest or recreate.