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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Union's duty of fair representation


Union's duty of fair representation
Matter of Robert Hickey, 34 PERB 4530

Hempstead school teacher Robert Hickey alleged that the Hempstead School Administrators Association violated its duty of fair representation when if failed to press the school district to pay him at the same rate of compensation for extra-curricular activities as the district paid to its other administrators for similar work. Hickey said he was paid about $33 per hour for his work while the others were paid $65 per hour.

According to Hickey, although he was advised that “the District refused to budge during negotiations with respect to his compensation ... he was not sure how serious an attempt was made by the Association to increase his compensation to the level of other administrators.”

PERB's Administrative Law Judge Elena Cacavas said that “absent bad faith, the duty of fair representation does not preclude an employee organization from reaching agreements that are more favorable to some unit employees than to others.”

Finding that Hickey failed to show that the Association “acted irresponsibly, grossly negligently or with improper motive,” Cacavas dismissed his charge in its entirety.

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