Emergency Board No. 129, Long Island Railroad and the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen, Locals 517 and 1090, Records

Collection Number: 5102

Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library


DESCRIPTIVE SUMMARY

Title:
Emergency Board No. 129, Long Island Railroad and the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen, Locals 517 and 1090, Records, 1960
Collection Number:
5102
Creator:
Emergency Board No. 129;
Long Island Railroad;
Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen. Local 517;
Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen. Local 1090
Quantity:
0.5 linear ft.
Forms of Material:
Maps, reports (documents), transcripts .
Repository:
Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library
Abstract:
Documents include reports, recommendations and proposals of the Emergency Board and of the New York State Board of Inquiry; proposals of the carrier, union and National Mediation Board; carrier and union exhibits, statements and agreements.
Language:
Collection material in English


ORGANIZATIONAL HISTORY

On April 19, 1960, the President of the U. S., acting under the authority given to him by the Railway Labor Act, created an Emergency Board to investigate and report on the dispute between the Long Island Rail Road and the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Locals 517 and 1090. The members of the Board were Curtis G. Shake, Chairman, Lloyd H. Bailer, and Edward A. Lynch.
The union's demands on the Long Island Rail Road which brought about the dispute were:
1. Reduction of the six-day week to five days for passenger service trainmen, without a reduction in pay.
2. Reduction of the work week for all men in local freight service to five days a week without loss of pay. The company contended that conductors and brakemen were required seven days a week.
3. Payment of switchtenders at the higher brakemen's rate.
4. Payment of the 95 cent daily allowance to yard trainmen not required to handle air hose for handling air hose.
On May 18, 1960, the Emergency Board found that rates being paid to Long Island trainmen were higher than the standard rates on other Class I carriers. Average annual earnings for Long Island trainmen were $7,965 in 1959 compared with $7,263 on all other Class I carriers.
The Railroad Trainmen then served an official notice on the Long Island Rail Road that they would go on strike at 12:01 A.M., Sunday, June 19.
Two days before the strike was scheduled to begin, W. P. Kennedy, International President of the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen, ordered locals 517 and 1090 to postpone the strike on an appeal by the National Mediation Board for a resumption of conferences "in the public interest."
Efforts of the National Mediation Board to avert the strike collapsed one week later, which released the trainmen from their no strike pledge and a strike was tentatively set for Sunday, July 10 at 12:01 am. After authorization received from International President Kennedy, July 10 was confirmed as the strike date.
On July 6, Governor Rockefeller took personal charge of efforts to prevent a strike on the Long Island Rail Road. He sent telegrams to company and union executives asking them to meet with George Moskowitz, Chairman of the State Mediation Board. Governor Rockefeller stepped in only after the union had rejected a plea by city, state and county officials for a two week postponement of the strike.
The Governor was able to persuade the railroad to accept a five day work week, but only with the stipulation that the union agree to moves which would help keep the costs at a minimum. The union refused to accept any economy moves and the conference ended without success.
The strike began, as scheduled, on Sunday morning, July 10. The State Public Service Commission immediately authorized all bus companies in Nassau and Suffolk counties and in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens to provide all possible transportation to the strike affected area. The Transport Workers Union supported the trainmen, refusing to work overtime and by not working on extra buses or subway trains in Queens or Long Island.
Industrial Commissioner Martin P. Catherwood then appointed a State Board of Inquiry consisting of the Very Rev. Philip E. Dobson of Fordham University, Peter J. Keulemans of General Bronze Co., and Dean John W. McConnell of Industrial and Labor Relations School at Cornell University. The board was directed to study all factors necessary to guarantee safe and efficient commuter service "with benefit to the economy of the area and at prices the commuting public can afford," and to make recommendations to help end the strike.
The Board of Inquiry proposed an arbitration plan on July 14 which called for a five day week with no cut in pay for the trainmen. Also included was a provision which would leave to final and binding arbitration the issue of how the shorter work week would be paid for. The union refused to accept binding arbitration.
On July 20 the National Mediation Board proposed a plan whereby the BRT would agree to a 2 1/2 cent-an-hour wage cut to help pay for the increased cost of a five day week. This proposal was accepted by the union but the railroad rejected it saying that the increased costs would still necessitate higher fares for passengers. The company again suggested binding arbitration on the method of financing the shorter work week, but the union still refused.
On August 3, 1960, Governor Rockefeller called the disputing parties together for a conference which lasted eleven and one-half hours before an agreement was reached. The three year agreement guaranteed a five day week. The cost of the shortened work week was set at $357,592, of which the company agreed to pay $162,041. The trainmen absorbed the remainder of the cost by agreeing to a 2 1/2 cent-an-hour wage cut and changes in work rules enabling more complete utilization of the existing work force. The union withdrew its demand for a five day week in freight service in return for a total of $53,040 in added compensation. The union won agreement to its other two demands. Yard service men will receive 95 cents per day for coupling air hose and switchtenders will receive extra pay when performing brakemen's duties.

COLLECTION DESCRIPTION

Emergency Board documents include carrier exhibits concerning the demands of the parties and the applicable rules of the existing agreement; and statements by officers of the Long Island Railroad. Union exhibits include local agreements (1953-1957) between the Long Island Railroad Company and road and yard conductors, ticket collectors, road and yard brakemen and switchtenders; and related Trainmen's publications.
Additional materials include transcripts of hearings (8 vol.); report to the president; order establishing the New York State Board of Inquiry; interim report (with draft) and recommendations of the Board of Inquiry; mediation agreements (1957, 1960) between railroads represented by the Eastern, Western, and Southeastern Carriers' Conference Committees and the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen; also proposals of the union, carriers, and the National Mediation Board.
SUBJECTS

Names:
Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen
Eastern Carriers' Conference Committee
Long Island Railroad Company
Southeastern Carriers' Conference Committee
United States. Emergency Board No. 129.
United States. National Mediation Board.
Western Carriers' Conference Committee
United States.

Subjects:
Mediation and conciliation, Industrial--New York (State)--Cases.
Mediation and conciliation, Industrial--United States--Cases.
Railroad employees.
Railroad trainmen.
Collective labor agreements. Railroads. New York (State)
Hours of labor. Mediation and conciliation, Industrial. United States.
Management rights. Mediation and conciliation, Industrial. United States.
Mediation and conciliation, Industrial. Railroads. United States.
Railroads. New York (State). State supervision.
Wages. Mediation and conciliation, Industrial. United States.
Wages. Railroads. New York (State)
Work rules. Mediation and conciliation, Industrial. United States.

Form and Genre Terms:
Maps.
Reports (documents)
Transcripts.


INFORMATION FOR USERS

Access Restrictions:
Access to the collections in the Kheel Center is restricted. Please contact a reference archivist for access to these materials.
Restrictions on Use:
This collection must be used in keeping with the Kheel Center Information Sheet and Procedures for Document Use.
Cite As:
Emergency Board No. 129, Long Island Railroad and the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen, Locals 517 and 1090, Records #5102. Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library.

RELATED MATERIALS

Related Collections:
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5149: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Records
5149 MB: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Memorabilia
5149 P: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Photographs
5348: W.P. Kennedy as President of the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen against the Long Island Railroad Company Court Documents
5446: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Ledger
5612: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Moosic Tunnel Lodge no.93 Meeting Minutes
5623: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Legislative Board of New York Files
5631: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Pacific Railroad General Committee File
5647: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Joppa Lodge (Toledo, OH) Minute Books
5894: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Additional Railroad Booklets
6268 P: Joint Committee of Adjustment for the Rock Island System's Order of Railway Conductors and Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Photograph
6312 P: Judith Sullivan Kowalczyk Collection of Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Photographs
6312 PUBS: Judith Sullivan Kowalczyk Collection of Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Publications
6312m: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Annual Report of the Legislative Board
6405 PUBS: William Sharp Collection of The Railroad Trainmen's Journal
6480 MB: Paul Berger Collection of Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen Memorabilia

CONTAINER LIST

Container
Description
Date
Box 1 Folder 1 1960
Box 1 Folder 2 1960
Box 1 Folder 3 1960