Board, there should be no change in the status quo and that the size of crews must be maintained until the Board rules.
There is an additional consideration. The Union served a so-called Section 6 notice under the Railway Labor Act, 45 U.S.C. § 156, proposing that thereafter the size of train crews shall be not less than one conductor and two trainmen. Resort to self-help is prohibited under the Railway Labor Act, as it has been construed, while proceedings under a Section 6 notice are pending and before all the administrative remedies provided by that statute are exhausted. This Court had occasion to discuss the procedure under this Act in considerable detail in Atlantic Coastline Railway Co. v. Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen, 262 F. Supp. 177, and that summary need not be reiterated here.
As this Court had occasion to say in the Akron case, to which reference has been made, after serving a notice under Section 6 the carrier may not change rates of pay, rules, or working conditions, including the size of train crews. On the other hand, the employees may not call a strike or use other coercive measures in order to enforce their demands. The obligations are reciprocal on the part of the carriers and the unions.
It is argued that by serving a Section 6 notice one side cannot prevent the other from taking any step. The Court is of the opinion, however, that if a railroad desires to reduce the size of crews, as it has been doing in this instance, an orderly manner to achieve its desire is to serve a Section 6 notice of its own. In any event, the pendency of the proceeding before the National Railroad Adjustment Board, which is considering the dispute as to the meaning and interpretation of the existing agreement, requires the status quo to be maintained until the Board acts.
In view of these considerations the Court will grant the motion of the defendant Union for a preliminary injunction restraining the carriers from reducing the size of train crews below one conductor and two brakemen. The Court is fixing the minimum size during the interim period at a conductor and two brakemen in view of the fact that is what the Section 6 notice served by the Union calls for.
A transcript of this oral decision will constitute the findings of fact and conclusions of law.
Counsel may submit a proposed order in accordance with this decision.
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