Dunlop 2 Committee Issues Report Reviewing Mediation Process at NMB

The Dunlop 2 Committee, which was appointed by the National Mediation Board (NMB) in September, 2009, has issued its Final Report examining the internal functions, policies and procedures of the NMB.

The four member Committee included TCU’s International Vice President Joel Parker. The other three Members were Seth Rosen, representing airline labor; Kenneth Gradia, representing railroad management; and Robert DeLucia, representing airline management.

The Report focuses on the NMB’s mediation function, and contains several recommendations to improve existing procedures. The Report was critical of recent bargaining rounds where negotiations were allowed to stall with no signs of progress, yet release from mediation was denied.

According to the Report, “The overarching criticism voiced to the Committee was that the mediation process – in too many cases – is insufficiently focused, coordinated and managed… As a result, it is often too lengthy a process, characterized by a lack of direction, with an inordinate length of time spent without making real progress towards reaching agreements. This was particularly evident during the last decade when many thought there was little credible threat of a release from mediation being issued by the Board.”  

The Committee recommended several reforms, including more involvement by the Board in developing effective mediation strategies for each dispute, more training for mediators, and increasing the productivity of the mediation sessions themselves.

The Committee also appended a joint labor-management report recommending several measures to improve the Board’s involvement in Section 3 arbitration matters.

Click here to read the NMB press release.

To read the complete report, click here.

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