facts that plaintiff Braxton did not even attend his local union meeting to discuss the UPS contract, that plaintiff Patrick attended his local meeting but did not speak, and that plaintiff Smith attended and distributed literature prepared by the TDU.
In this context, the members' right to express their views is intertwined with their right to an equal vote, and thus the Court will not reiterate what it has already said above. Recognizing that § 101(a)(2) "does not guarantee access to all information that a member might want to speak about," Mallick, 749 F.2d at 786, the Court still finds that by denying plaintiffs access to the complete contract, defendants also have violated plaintiffs' rights to express their views. Plaintiffs have a right to communicate their views about the entire contract with all members from any jobsite they wish. After all, all members vote to ratify or reject a contract as a single package, including all supplements. Similarly, plaintiffs may choose not to express their views based on the information they have. The fact is that plaintiffs have requested the information, expressing a need for it. To allow defendants to deny this access would be to allow them to dictate on what the members should express an opinion, and that constitutes an express violation of the plaintiff members' statutory freedoms of speech and assembly.
Defendants make much of the fact that the TDU, which as an entity is not entitled to access to the full contract, is the real party in interest, and that plaintiffs are simply "nominal" in this lawsuit. While this may be true to a significant degree, the fact remains that plaintiffs are members of the IBT, and they have a right to obtain the complete contract on which they will debate and ultimately vote. Defendants' pleading, as well as their arguments before the Court, reflect their distaste for the TDU, and it is apparent that there is no love lost between the TDU and the IBT. However, the Court may not allow defendants to deny plaintiffs their rights based upon their political differences. This is precisely what §§ 101(a)(1) and (a)(2) are designed to prevent.
The Court also is satisfied that plaintiffs will be irreparably injured if the Court does not order defendants to produce the full contract with all of its supplements. Defendants argue that now that the local union meetings have been conducted, plaintiffs' emergency need, if ever they had one, has passed. They also argue that because plaintiffs admittedly have already formed an opinion on which way to vote, they will not be injured by defendants' refusal to supply the full contract. Furthermore, they contend that because both the IBT and the TDU have decided to recommend rejection of the contract, plaintiffs cannot be harmed.
The existence of a new UPS proposal certainly bolsters plaintiffs' position not only that they will be injured, but also that their request for injunctive relief has not been made too late. It is true that local meetings were held on June 30 and July 1, and that they were the primary fora for discussion among members. However, with a new contract proposal at hand, and with time running out on the current contract, members now have an even greater need to obtain as much information as possible and to consult with one another. Once the ballots are cast (and members generally cast them soon after they are received, Patrick Affidavit at 3), plaintiffs' only remedy if they were later to succeed on the merits would be to seek to overturn the election results. Surely relief is favored before the election, because however disruptive an injunction may be during the course of an election, the effect of invalidating an election is even more disruptive. See Lucas v. Townsend, 486 U.S. 1301, 1305, 100 L. Ed. 2d 589, 108 S. Ct. 1763 (1988) (Kennedy, J., in chambers). Even defendants could not disagree with this. Also, the TDU has not yet taken a position with respect to the new UPS contract proposal. And, even if the TDU is again in agreement with the IBT that this proposal should be rejected, other members may not agree and may seek to ratify the contract. Thus, members are entitled to access to all of the contract if they so request.
It is particularly true in this case, in which defendants have not shown that they will be harmed at all by providing plaintiffs with copies of both of UPS's proposed contracts, that granting plaintiffs relief at this time will cause little or no disruption. It is simple relief, and it certainly cannot be argued that it will disrupt the election process. It also does not cause undue interference with the internal affairs of the union. The only harm to themselves defendants may have shown is the loss of another political battle with the TDU, and that does not constitute a bar to plaintiffs' relief.
Finally, the public interest supports the granting of plaintiffs' requested relief. The public has an interest in assuring that unions, which have taken on a fiduciary duty with respect to workers in the United States, and in which those workers have placed their trust, do not abuse their power. The public also depends upon services and products which are provided by companies whose workers are represented by unions. Thus, the public has a strong interest in the smooth operations of such companies, and, derivatively, in the integrity of the employment contract negotiations process. Finally, the public has an interest in seeing that its court system, already overloaded, does not become further burdened with cases involving issues which have essentially been resolved, only because of a continuing struggle between a union and its dissident members. An appropriate order granting the motion for a preliminary injunction accompanies this Opinion.
Upon consideration of plaintiffs' motion for a preliminary injunction, and the evidence and arguments submitted by both parties, for the reasons set forth in the accompanying Opinion it hereby is
ORDERED, that defendants IBT and McCarthy shall deliver to representatives of the plaintiffs
(a) the proposed United Parcel Service Contract, Supplements, Riders and Addenda that were presented to the local union representatives on June 26, 1990, and which the representatives voted to recommend that the members reject, and
(b) the second proposed contract, based on the United Parcel Service offer of July 5, 1990.