On September 12, 2023, Joseph Torres, Partner, met Southern Illinois union stewards and presented the fundamentals of the “duty of fair representation.” A union satisfies its duty of fair representation unless its failure to represent a member was arbitrary, discriminatory, or in bad faith. Vaca v. Sipes, 386 U.S. 171, 186 (1967). This standard is highly deferential towards unions and grants unions a wide range of reasonableness in their representational activities. Despite this deferential standard, untrained union stewards and representatives regularly violate the duty of fair representation, resulting in significant costs and penalties for unions.
Stewards are the front-line representative for every union, and it is imperative they are properly trained and understand the limits of their representational activities. To ensure your union is protected, contact the attorneys of Karmel & Torres, LLC to schedule steward training and seminars.