Delta Airlines V Association of Flight Attendants

Overview

NCP Decision Rejected
Current Status Closed
Date Submitted 10/09/2008
Date Closed 08/01/2009
Case Duration 17 weeks and 1 days
Host Country US  (OECD member)
Sector Transport 
Issue(s) Interference with the right to organise
Provisions Cited IV.1-a  IV.6   
Case Description In September 2008, the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA-CWA) submitted a complaint to the US NCP concerning the activities of Delta Airlines.

The complaint concerns an election that was held at the end of May 2008, to determine whether flight attendants should be represented by the AFA-CWA. During the election period, Delta Airlines conducted an aggressive anti-union campaign, which led to the turn out in the election being below the required level. The company produced a DVD that was sent to every flight attendant’s home stating that union representation would harm the relationship between Delta Airlines and its employees.

The company dismissed 207 out of 826 workers without consultation and in violation of the collective agreeement. A further 100 workers were dismissed including 13 members of the Trade Union's Executive Committee.

Developments On the 8 January 2009, the US National Contact Point sent a letter rejecting the case. The grounds for rejection included the absence of an international investment context, as well as the existence of parallel legal proceedings,

The Association of Flight Attendants (AFA-CWA) wrote again to the US NCP highlighting that the domestic conduct has strong implications for conduct in its international operations and emphasising that the OECD MNE Guidelines provide stand-alone, best practice recommendations for responsible business behaviour worldwide, consistent with applicable laws. The specific instance procedure should be invoked on the basis of the merits of the case vis a vis the provisions of the Guidelines and irrespective of other proceedings.

Outcome The case was rejected.

Organisations

Lead NCP US NCP : Single Department with Interagency Working Group 

Companies

Multinational Company Delta Airlines (Home country: US)

Complainants

Lead Complainant Association of Flight Attendants : National Sectoral Union 
Supporting Complainant AFL-CIO : National Centre 

TUAC Analysis

Did the NCP publish its initial assessment? status-icon
Did the case involve parallel proceedings? status-icon
Was the existence of parallel proceedings an obstacle to the NCP accepting the case? status-icon
Was the businsess relationship other than that of a subsidiary? status-icon
Was the nature of the business relationship an obstacle to the NCP accepting the case? status-icon
Did the NCP inform other relevant government departments about its acceptance of this case? status-icon
Did the NCP offer mediation or conciliation? status-icon
Did the company accept the offer of mediation or conciliation? status-icon
Did the complainant(s) accept the offer of mediation or conciliation? status-icon
Was mediation or conciliation held? status-icon
Was mediation or conciliation conducted by a professional mediator? status-icon
Did the parties reach agreement? status-icon
If yes, did the NCP publish this agreement following the consent of the parties? status-icon
If mediation was refused or failed did the NCP make an assessment of whether the company had breached the Guidelines? status-icon
Did the NCP conduct in-host country fact finding? status-icon
Did the NCP make recommendations to the company on the future implementation of the Guidelines? status-icon
Did the NCP publish its final statement or report? status-icon
Did the NCP provide for follow-up of the agreement/recommendations? status-icon
Did the NCP inform other relevant government departments about its final statement or report? status-icon
Did the NCP inform public pension funds about its final statement or report? status-icon
Did the NCP apply any consequences in this case? status-icon
Did the NCP follow the indicative timescales set out in the procedural guidance? status-icon
Was there a positive outcome for the workers involved in this case? status-icon
Did the filing of the case under the Guidelines have a positive impact for the workers involved? status-icon
Did the lead NCP play a positive role? status-icon
If different, did the home NCP play a positive role? status-icon

TUAC Assessment

The fact that the grounds for rejection included the absence of an international investment context mirrors a decision taken in 2005 by the Swiss NCP.

Implications

No international investment dimension: the allegations concerned a U.S. multinational operating in the U.S.; parallel legal proceedings