to Bottone, they did not tell Hession that they intended the strike to last longer than 24 hours.
Whatever may be said of Hession's intentions in pectore, the fact is that when he called the strike on Sunday evening, he did not call it for 24 hours, but "until the Roadway dispute was settled." We find therefore that he called an open-ended strike and that his recommendation was unanimously followed by the union body. We further find that Hession took no action at all which could be construed as seeking to get the men back to work until late Monday afternoon. We find that Hession's remarks to the union membership at the Monday night meeting were directed principally towards saving the leadership from going to jail and the union treasury from being fined, and that he gave not a forceful direction to return to work under threat of union sanction, but rather a weak exhortation. In any event, we find that the union membership overwhelmingly rejected his exhortation and voted to stay out; hence the continuation of the walkout was mass union action in the purest sense, just as was its initiation.
We find, too, that Hession's efforts on Tuesday to get the membership back to work were virtually nil and that he made no efforts from Tuesday afternoon through Friday to do so. Furthermore, we find that no other officer or member of the executive board of the union exerted efforts to get the men back to work after Tuesday morning. Finally, we find that Hession was well aware on Sunday morning of the political maelstrom in which he was engulfed and that he had every reason to believe that once he called for a strike he could not get the men back to work. The actions of the stewards at the Tuesday morning meeting were reflective of the view of the majority of the membership that the strike should continue.
Notwithstanding the foregoing recital, there was even more damning evidence of the intention of Hession and the union leadership with respect to the strike. For we find as a fact that, shortly before the work stoppage was called, Hession and the union's business agents agreed to pay themselves, in advance, four weeks' vacation pay, a procedure which had never previously been put into effect at the union. Hession and his cohorts were aware that the failure to settle the Roadway problem would toll their political death knell and perhaps precipitate a trusteeship, and they wanted to protect themselves. This corroborates our finding that Hession and the leadership intended that the strike would continue for so long as was necessary to achieve the union's purposes, i. e., settlement of the antecedent Roadway dispute.
The city-wide work stoppage in question by the membership of Local 107 was, unfortunately, accompanied by violence and breaches of the peace on the part of members of the Local, many of whom were arrested on criminal charges. During the work stoppage, the member companies of MTLR, including plaintiffs, were unable to use equipment located in the Philadelphia area in their operations, were unable to fulfill contracts of carriage, and were otherwise prevented from conducting their business operations. Indeed, the entire City of Philadelphia was partially crippled by the situation set in motion on Sunday evening, June 20, 1965, at the Hotel Philadelphia.
The events which we have recounted constitute one of the shabbiest chapters in the history of the labor movement in Pennsylvania. While our recitation has been lengthy, it at least renders the discussion portion of this Opinion brief. For, under the applicable law, it is clear that the matter left open by our previous Opinion and Order must be resolved in favor of the plaintiffs, as we conclude that Local 107 remained in breach of its collective bargaining agreement with the plaintiffs throughout the period of the strike.
The core of our federal labor policy is the promotion of industrial peace and stability by encouraging the practice and procedures of collective bargaining. "If unions can breach agreements with relative impunity, then such agreements do not tend to stabilize industrial relations. . . ." S.Rep.No. 105, 80th Cong., 1st Sess. at 16 (1947), quoted in Textile Workers Union v. Lincoln Mills, 353 U.S. 448, 454, 77 S. Ct. 912, 916, 1 L. Ed. 2d 972 (1957). The well-established principle of union liability for damages resulting from breach of a no-strike clause is, then, fully consonant with the federal labor policy. The case at bar, though unusual in some respects, is a case where precedent calls for a finding of liability. As will be seen, liability flows from several lines of reasoning.
First, the strike was authorized by the official leadership of the union and overwhelmingly approved by the rank and file, not just for one day, but for its duration, i. e., as long as the Roadway dispute lasted. Accordingly, the continuation of the strike after the first day was not an unauthorized, or wildcat, strike. The conclusion that the continuation of the strike after the first day was not unintended or entirely disapproved of is also supported by: (1) the payment by Hession and the business agents to themselves of four weeks' vacation pay; and (2) the failure of the leadership to make whole-hearted efforts to end the strike during the week (see pp. 775-776 supra).
In further support of their position, the plaintiffs have urged the proposition that a union is responsible for the mass action of its members, whether authorized or not, because a union is no more than a collective association of its members. We are inclined to agree that, in general, this is a correct principle of labor law. This was the holding in United States v. Brotherhood of R. R. Trainmen, 96 F. Supp. 428 (N.D.Ill.1951). That case was a contempt proceeding for violation of an injunction against a strike. The court found as a fact that the union leadership had made numerous efforts to get the men back to work, and absolved the officers of liability for contempt. But the union itself was nonetheless liable. In its bench opinion the court said:
[As] long as a Union is functioning as a Union it must be held responsible for the mass actions of its members. That means this, that when the members go out and act in a concerted fashion and do an illegal act the Union is responsible. They just can't say, "Oh well, we didn't do that as Union members."