Appeals Court Upholds Decision Against Pratt & Whitney

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld a lawsuit brought by IAM District 26 against United Technologies Corporation (UTC), parent company of Pratt & Whitney. The court upheld a U.S. District Court’s injunction that barred Pratt from closing plants in Cheshire and East Hartford, CT.

The unanimous 23-page decision from the three-judge appeals panel states, in part: “The district court concluded that Pratt had not made, and was not making, ‘every reasonable effort’ to preserve bargaining unit work as required by the CBA [collective bargaining agreement]. We find no error… in the district court’s determination that Pratt failed to pursue the goal of preserving bargaining unit work in good faith. We therefore affirm the judgment.”

“This once again confirms what we’ve said all along – Pratt didn’t give us a chance to address their concerns to keep the work here,” says IAM chief UTC negotiator Jim Parent. “It’s more than 1,000 hourly and salary jobs – that’s 1,000 workers who deserve a fair chance to keep their livelihoods, and a thousand families who depend on those wage earners.”

“This court decision brings home the fact that UTC and Pratt leadership need to reconsider their plans,” says IAM District 26 DBR Everett Corey. “They need to work with us, not against us, to keep Cheshire & CARO open.  We’re prepared to reach agreement – or fight it out – in contract negotiations. The ball’s in the company’s court right now.”

IAM attorney Gregg Adler, assisted by Mary Kelly, argued the case. Kelly is the daughter of former GLR Paul Kelly who passed away in 2001.

The injunction will remain in effect until the expiration of the collective bargaining agreement December 5, 2010.