RAILROADS: The Right Not to Join

The Santa Fe is one of the nation's last major roads to hold out against union shop contracts, permitted under a 1951 amendment to the Railway Labor Act. Last week, in a courtroom in Amarillo, Texas, Santa Fe President Fred Gurley argued against the union shop in a suit filed by 14 Santa Fe workers. They asked that 16 A.F.L. railroad unions be permanently enjoined from enforcing proposed union shop contracts, and that the union shop be declared illegal.

The suit, like half a dozen others filed by railroad employees around the U.S., is based mainly on Texas' "right to...

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