Member Sues Pittsburgh Local

A Pittsburgh Port Auth. employee and senior member of the Int’l Bhd. of Electrical Workers has sued the Authority and IBEW Local 29 in U.S. Dist. Court, saying he has been denied overtime work and his grievances have been ignored. Robert Exler of Harmar, Pa., has been a Port Authority employee since 1968 and says Local 29 violated the collective bargaining agreement of hourly workers by denying him the opportunity to arbitrate or appeal.

Under the terms of the agreement, senior members are to be used for work whenever possible. Exler says he is the most senior member of IBEW Local 29, but says it has denied him overtime work. He also claims Local 29’s business agent “intentionally denied [him] of his rights by not allowing the grievance procedure to occur.”

Exler says the Authority was told about the problem but ignored it, saying its policy was to deal only with Local 29 concerning labor disputes between the parties. He claims the Authority violated its duty to enforce the bargaining agreement. Exler is asking for a judgment in excess of $100,000 in lost overtime pay and damages. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 8/16/01]