DOL DEMANDS GREATER SECRECY IN CONVENTION VOTES
There is an interesting case working its way through the Colorado federal courts. The Department of Labor has sued a union alleging that the voting process at its convention was not as secret as law requires. If DOL wins this one, unions will have to step up their efforts to enabled delegates to mark ballots in secret. Here is what DOL has posted on its own web site about the case. In fact, if unions have elections in progress now and are ignoring the DOL demands they risk a lot of money rerunning the elections.
“On August 18, 2014, in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado, the Department filed suit against Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 1001 (located in Westminster, Colo.), concerning its December 2, 2013 election of officers. The OLMS investigation determined that the union failed to conduct its election by secret ballot among the members in good standing in that: a) members were permitted to vote together at large tables; b) members marked ballots while waiting in line to cast ballots and at the election judge’s table, in plain view of election judges; c) the polling places had one cardboard voting partition, which was inadequate to accommodate the large number of voters; and d) members were never instructed to use the cardboard partitions for voting. The violation may have affected the offices of vice president, recording secretary/correspondent, financial secretary-treasurer/assistant business agent and 2nd convention delegate, chief steward (Platte Transportation Division), chief steward (Platte Maintenance Division), chief steward (Light Rail Transportation Division), and chief steward (First Transit Denver). The suit follows an investigation by the OLMS Denver-St. Louis District Office.”