Airlines to challenge union voting rule

May 11, 2010 at 12:54 PM

MEMPHIS, May 11 (UPI) -- The Air Transportation Association said it would challenge a federal rule change that would stop counting votes not cast among workers trying to unionize.

The trade group said it would take the National Mediation Board to court for changing the way votes are counted in elections among workers attempting to form a union, the Memphis Commercial Appeal reported Tuesday.

The previous rule set by the National Mediation Board would count as a no vote a worker who did not take part in balloting.

On Monday, the board changed the rule, which had been in effect for 75 years. The new rule says a simple majority among those who vote would be enough to establish a union.

"The reality is nowhere else in the nation does your vote count without participating," said Shawn Fivecoat, an official with the Association of Flight Attendants.

ATA spokesman David Castelveter said: "We don't think the NMB has the authority to change the election process. We think the process they followed (in making the rule change) was legally deficient."

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